WatchESPN – the free app that provides 24/7 live streaming of ESPN programming – had been updated this week to support the iPad. This gives iPad and iPhone users live streaming content from ESPN, ESPN 2, ESPN 3, and ESPNU.
I tried to give it a quick test run on my iPad 2 this morning, but its setup process defeated me. To say the setup process is cumbersome would be a big understatement. Until you complete it you can only see programming schedules, no videos.
You need to either sign into an existing myESPN account or create a new one, then add your zip code and internet provider (in my case, Time Warner Cable). This can be done in the app, Then you wait for an email confirmation with a link to follow. At the linked page you need to login to your internet provider account (blah – I almost never have need to do this, so never remember my details). I went through this and eventually got a message saying congratulations and confirming I’m authorized to watch ESPN on my mobile device.
That sounded good, and when I first asked the app to ‘Re-check access’ it showed I had it and showed a Play button on videos – but then refused to play any of them. I closed the app out, went back in, and then it had returned to saying I had no access to video, and was asking me to setup again. No thanks – I just don’t need mobile ESPN access badly enough to waste even more time on a crappy setup process.
I hope those of you who are big ESPN fans have had a much better time than mine when using the app. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, here’s an App Store link for WatchESPN – it’s a free app and a universal app optimized for both iPad and iPhone.