Sport is a huge part of many people’s lives. We dedicate whole days to playing our favorite sports and watching our beloved teams. While it is easy enough to keep up with the news surrounding our favorite professional sports and athletes, it’s not always so easy to stay updated on the sports played by our loved ones.
GameOn, from sport specialists Korrio, is a new app for iOS that aims to bring families and friends closer together through a shared love of sport. It’s a social tool that can be used to keep everyone updated on the teams and players they care about most, and relive the highlights from each and every game.
The app, which is free to download, requires the creation of a GameOn account. Once completed, you can begin channeling your inner sportscaster.
In GameOn, you can create a “Channel” for a player, team or sport and invite people to follow. You can easily customize each channel with a team logo, photo of the player or by using one of the sport-specific icons provided. You can invite followers to your channel so they receive any updates posted — this is achieved by either searching by name (if they are already using GameOn) or by sending them an email invite to join. You can make your channels public or private — if your channel is for your son’s football team, for example, you might want make that invite-only.
Within your channel you can create “Events” to broadcast and share updates on. When creating an event for a new game, you simply select the sport type, and enter your team and the opposing team’s names. You can create an event name — if it is a championship final, for example — or simply leave it as Team A vs. Team B, set the date and time for the event, and even add the location and field number — a useful addition in order to keep those who plan on attending updated.
Once you set up an event, you can begin broadcasting updates. Here, you can write up highlights or post photos fro the game, as well as update the score. Every update shows up in the highlight reel below the scoreboard, visible to all followers who can add their own comments too. Highlights can also be pushed to Facebook and Twitter. These live updates are particularly useful for those that can’t be there on the day, making following the game easy, and stay as part of the highlight reel for that event. Comments are more ephemeral and do not remain as part of the highlight reel after the event but are great for creating discussion and buzz around a game.
I’d like to see league standings added to that can be adjusted added to the app, for quick reference, although I understand this would have to put a lot of the data gathering, entry and maintenance on to the user.
In terms of usage, GameOn’s UI is smooth and highly-polished. Everything from the sport-themed color palette and icons to the sleek animations suggests a well put together product. It can take a little time to get used to where to go to invite new followers or start a new event, but you’ll pick it up after using the app a few times and exploring the menus.
Having been involved in a junior football (soccer) league from a young age here in the UK, I can see the potential for GameOn. It really could be an exceptional tool for keeping players and parents up to date on upcoming games as well as sharing the best moments within them — even for those not present on the day. From my experience, the centralized league websites are usually difficult to use and full of dated content. Most players and family members have taken to Facebook and SMS to share match updates and information on future game schedules but those experiences not being designed for that use-case leave a lot to be desired. A purpose-built app by sports fans, for sports fans in GameOn is exactly the kind of tool that can solve the shortcomings of other social channels.
That being said, the hardest part of working GameOn into the setup for your team is in gaining adoption. You’ll want your players, families and friends to download the app, create an account and start training themselves to use GameOn as their go-to source for their sports commitments. A behavioural change like that can be difficult to achieve. GameOn is also iPhone-only for the moment meaning your Android-toting friends would be left out of the loop (for now — it is said to be coming to Android in 2016).
Despite that, being able to capture those special sporting moments is game changing and the ability to see shared updates is the next best thing to being there!