Sports Geekery

Following Sports with Mobile Apps, Computers, & Gadgets

Best Free Mobile Sports Scores Apps for iPhone and Android

You’re on the go and you want a mobile app to keep you updated on the latest sports scores.  Ultimately, settling on a preferred sports app is going to come down to personal preference. What are you looking for in an ideal app? Team alerts? Detailed stats and box scores? Ease of use? Video?  Let’s take a look at the top apps in the mobile sports scores playground.

ESPN ScoreCenter

Positives

  • Video of top 10 news stories in the “Lead” section
  • Most news articles are optimized for mobile, however, additional team news feed includes non-optimized content from 3rd party sites.
  • Ability to switch between sports with simple flick of the finger
  • MyTeams section displays only scores and news from your favorite teams
  • “The Lead” section pulls scores and news from top stories.
  • Alerts currently available for iOS, but not Android version.

Negatives

  • Layout allows for only a couple scores to be displayed per screen, so you need to scroll to search through scoreboard.
  • No Alerts for Android Version.
  • Can’t scroll back more than one day to see earlier game scores.

ESPN ScoreCenter has a distinct style over substance feel to it. It hits most of the basics and offers more sports leagues, but lacks some of the depth of the other choices. The video content is certainly a substantial feature that can’t be matched by the other apps. It delivers 10 video clips that include highlight, analysis, and other SportsCenter content. Its definitely worth having, but isn’t the end-all-be-all app that you’d think ESPN would be capable of producing. It’s free, ad-supported, and available for iOS and Android

Download ESPN ScoreCenter from iTunes or the Android Market.

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Yahoo Sportacular

Positives

  • Pulls news articles from a wide variety of sources like ESPN, Sporting News, Fox, and more.
  • Favorite Teams option including a Favorite Teams page with all scores & news for your favorites
  • Team & Game Alerts
  • Team specific news feeds

Negatives

  • News articles open in a non-mobile optimized browser window making them difficult to read.
  • Doesn’t always load very quickly

Sportacular has a centralized “My Favorite Teams” section that displays scores of all your favorite teams in one place.  News articles are pulled from an impressive variety of sources, like SI.com, ESPN, Yahoo and more. All these sources are customizable and can be added or removed. You’ll also find team specific news feeds so you an filter out articles that might not be of interest. Unfortunately, the articles aren’t optimized for mobile display, so reading them on a mobile phone is usually rather cumbersome. Plenty of stats, rosters, schedules, and even the ability to add a “custom team” to track your fantasy players. It’s free, ad-supported, and available for iOS and Android. An ad-free “Pro” version is available for iOS for $1.99.

iOS: Download the free Yahoo! Sportacular, or “Pro” version of Yahoo! Sportacular from iTunes.

Android: Download Yahoo Sportacular from the Android Market.

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Sports Tap

Simplicity is the key feature of SportsTap. It’s quick and easy to jump into the app and with one tap, select the icon of your desired sport and find the scores. Red circles with numbers on the icons indicate which sports have games currently in progress. You can customize the main page to include only the sports you care about and remove others. Scroll down below the scores and you’ll find News, Standings, Transactions, League Leaders in a variety of statistical categories, and team schedules. You can set favorite teams and get alerts. We like the shear simplicity and usability that allows you to quickly and efficiently get a score while on the go. A downside is that it lacks a centralized Favorites Section to display only scores and news from your favorite teams. [Note: SportsTap was purchased recently by Score Score Media, makers of ScoreMobile]

Positives: Quick, easy and efficient to use

Negatives: Lacks Favorites section for displaying only favorite teams.

Download SportsTap for iPhone or iPod Touch or Android.

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ScoreMoble

Positives

  • Articles are fully optimized for mobile viewing
  • Video content
  • Favorites section displays only your favorite teams

Negatives

  • Video content is pretty unspectacular
  • News articles pulled from limited sources
  • No team specific news feeds

The news articles are fully optimized and displayed right in the app, but the sources and articles are more limited than the other apps. It features the most in depth box scores of any of the other apps. It’s very well laid out and you can even customize which buttons are displayed along the bottom. ScoreMobile has video clips, but we found most of them to be fluff and filler material as opposed to quality content. There seems to be an inordinate amount of video clips with pre-game predictions. (Ed note: This is fine for the occasional big game, but how many really need to watch a pre-game prediction for a Mets-Phillies game on a Friday in mid-July??) Then again, maybe this goes hand-in-hand with the inclusion of betting lines on the scoreboard. I can see showing the betting lines for football, but baseball? Really? That being said, I can’t really knock the app for less than stellar video content when most of the other apps have no video at all.

Download ScoreMobile iPhone Edition from iTunes or the Android version from the Android Market.

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Unfortunately, there isn’t a true free killer sports scores app that makes the others obsolete. Ultimately, personal preference will play the deciding role in which app you use. I find myself using SportsTap the most when I’m on the go and want to grab a quick score update. I only use ESPN ScoreCenter when I want to catch a highlight or some video content. If I could only carry one on my phone, I’d likely go with Yahoo Sportacular and make due with the non-optimized articles.

Which app is your favorite for sports scores?

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