It can be a little hard to believe, but each of us carries more computing power in our pockets than NASA used to land Apollo 11 on the Moon. Our smartphones have taken over our lives in a little over a decade, becoming our companion from the moment we wake up to the moment we go to sleep.
We use them to read the news, do our work, buy our groceries, communicate with friends, tell the time, navigate, listen to music, watch television, and manage our finances.
Whether we like it or not, most of us feel pretty lost without our phones or when the battery dies and we’re left without a charger.
However, if you’re a sports fan, did you know you could use your smartphone to stay up to date with and get much closer to your favorite team, athlete, or competition. There are plenty of ways you can do this, but here are some of the best options.
Watch Live Sports
Television helped to develop modern professional sports by providing a much larger audience for teams to monetize through the sale of broadcast rights and sponsorship contracts.
The huge stadiums and eye-watering salaries seen in modern professional sports wouldn’t exist today if it wasn’t for TV.
But watching sports on television isn’t perfect. For a start, if you leave the room to make a drink, answer the call of nature, or to see who is at the door, you’ll miss the action.
Of course, you can try and wait for the commercial break, but in sports like football or Formula 1, you might be waiting the best part of an hour for the next one.
Being tethered to the TV also means you can’t go out to do other things at the same time, whether that be work, shopping, or spending time with friends.
That’s where your smartphone comes in. It’s now possible to stream most live sports games right to wherever you are.
Depending on where you are in the world and whether you pay for any additional TV subscriptions, you may already have access to many sports through mobile apps.
In the UK, sports that are shown on the BBC, ITV, and Channel 4 can all be streamed through their respective apps. The same applies to the paid subscription TV companies such as Sky and Eurosport through the Sky Go and Eurosport Player apps respectively.
Many sports leagues now also offer direct subscription packages, similar to that offered by companies like Netflix and Hulu, for fans to watch games on their smartphones, including the NFL, the EFL, Formula 1, and the NBA.
Bet on Sports
Betting has almost always been a part of the sport, though the way we place wagers on games has changed a lot over the years. Today, smartphones make it easier than ever before to place wagers on games, no matter what sport you’re watching or where you’re watching it from.
Mobile sports betting also makes it possible for bookmakers to offer features like in-play and cashout, which adds a new dynamic to the activity.
There is a lot of competition in the sports betting market, so most bookmakers now provide quality smartphone apps for their customers.
However, this means it can be difficult to know which ones are going to work best for you. Thankfully, OLBG has put together a guide that looks at the top 25 apps for football betting, examining factors like how competitive the odds are, access to accumulators, and ease of use.
Get a Behind the Scenes Look
Smartphones have also made it easier for us to get a behind-the-scenes look into the lives of our favorite athletes and beloved teams.
Sports stars from tennis’ Andy Murray to Formula 1’s Lewis Hamilton share much more about their daily activities than athletes in previous generations.
This allows fans to see how they are preparing for major events, their personal lives, exercise regimes, hobbies, and business interests.
For example, seven-time Formula 1 world champion, Michael Schumacher didn’t have a channel to share his personal life with fans during his career.
Even when he came out of retirement in 2010, during the boom of social media, he retained strict control over his privacy.
In contrast, his son, Mick Schumacher, who now also races in the sport, shares several updates a week, including a recent one that shows him playing with his pet dog and another of him working out in the gym.
Your smartphone gives you instant access to all of this content throughout the day and can even be set up to notify you when certain accounts publish a new post.
This can be important when you’re expecting an update about a potential contract signing or transfer, as athletes and teams now often publish news of these events on their social media accounts before anywhere else.
Social media can also be used during games to get updates from journalists, pundits, handicappers, and others who can provide extra insight into what’s happening beyond what you see on television.