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Last week, I dropped 15 dollars on MLBAM’s new app, MLB At Bat 2010. A similar app (more on the differences later) is available for Blackberry and various Apple products. Overall, its a pretty good value, but I’ll have a couple of warnings.
As many of you may know, I no longer live in the New York area. On top of typical out-of-market issues that I have watching Yankee games, I’m now stuck in an apartment with a spotty internet connection. Streaming video from Youtube or Hulu is problematic enough, but live video or audio from MLB.tv is just too much for my cheap wireless. My phone’s 3G connection, on the other hand, streams video fine. But more on that later.
The Android MLB 2010 App costs 15 dollars, and has no monthly subscription fee, though I will probably have to buy the 2011 version for next season. For that (by far the most expensive app that I’ve seen), you get a bunch of cool features:
- Access to Gameday Audio streams for either the home or away team
- Live box scores
- MLB.com-style pitch-by-pitch and play data
- Video highlights
The audio is nice. I definitely expect to have one ear on the Sterling broadcast while at games this summer, especially up in the nosebleeds in Baltimore. I ran pretty well in the poor-reception environment of the DC Metro, although I had to press a button a few times to renew the stream a few times. DC reception is spotty sometimes, so that’s understandable.
The video is a cool little thing to have access to, though its hard to tell during spring training. MLBAM uploads game highlights and recaps, which stream pretty smoothly to your phone. There was some MLB network stuff in there, so I assume that once the season starts I’ll get a chance to view top plays and other cool highlight reels. Its not a bad distraction while waiting for a subway train, but I don’t find myself checking it too much while listening to games.
The box scores and play-by-play stuff is almost exactly what you’ll find on MLB.com’s Gameday. Pitch/Fx data isn’t available because of spring training, but I’d expect that to be around once the season starts. These are a little buggy on my Droid right now – the box scores are slow to refresh, and the play-by-play tends to need be refreshed a bit. But overall, they work as you’d expect.
However, the one thing that the Android MLB At Bat 2010 app lacks is streaming live video. You may know about the same iPhone app which allows MLB.tv subscribers to stream games on their phone. I had bought the app in hopes of doing the same down here. Unfortunately, MLB says that the Android operating system can’t support live streaming video. Hopefully this can change, since its BS, and I’ll be able to watch games again. Just one thing for you to look out for.
I’m also counting on some of the bugs to be fixed as the season starts.
Overall, definitely worth 15 dollars. I can listen to any 2010 MLB game on my phone without having to pay a subscription fee, and I get a few little goodies to boot. Just don’t expect to watch games live on it, for now. I can’t imagine MLB ignoring the growing Android market because they are too lazy to figure out how to stream live video like the NBA does.
Photo Credit: Androidjunkies.com
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