One of the best things about using an iPad is all the great apps that we can run on it. There are excellent apps for just about any purpose you can think of. Better still, there are lots of great free apps for the iPad. Our Best Free iPad App of the Week posts highlight these apps.
This week’s pick is ESPN SportsCenter Feed, a great little app for sports fans – and especially fans of major US sports. This app provides real-time sports news that you can easily customize to match your personal tastes.
I’ve tried a few ESPN apps for the iPad in the past, and I have to say this one is by far the nicest to use, and the easiest to sign into – as you can sign in with an ESPN ID or just use your Facebook account.
As soon as you sign in you are prompted to start letting the app know about your favorite sports and teams.
The app’s UI is all about the feed, as the name would imply. The default view shows a stream of latest feed items in a left sidebar that occupies about 1/3 of the page. When you tap an item it is displayed on the right in the remaining 2/3 of the page. A single tap on the control button at the top left of the screen will toggle an additional left sidebar visible or hidden. On this sidebar you tap to choose which news you want to see in the feed. You can select to see all, single sports, just your favorite teams’ news, Top Stories, Most Popular, video content, or favorited stories.
The feed offers a nice variety of types of stories and pieces, including a good amount of multimedia content and videos and ESPN Radio clips in particular. The sports currently covered with individual feeds are NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, NCAA Football, NCAA Men’s and Women’s Basketball, NASCAR, Golf, Soccer, Tennis, Racing, Boxing, MMA, Olympics,and the WNBA.
You can save articles as favorites and share items via email, Messages, Facebook, and Twitter.
My only gripes about the app are that a few articles require an ESPN Insider account to view (though these are relatively few) and that the coverage could doing with being a little less US-centric, especially in the Soccer section.
Here’s an App Store link for ESPN SportsCenter Feed; it’s a universal app designed to run on both iPad and iPhone.
If you’re after more great free iPad apps, be sure to check out our previous choices for Best Free iPad of the Week. We’ve also recently put together a best of the best of our selections from the last year in a Top 25 Best Free iPad Apps list.