While AMC Theaters puts up a fuss about major motion pictures coming to
VoD systems too soon after their theatrical release, ESPN is getting
with the program. It's obvious that consumers want more mobile ways to
consume content, so rather than urging people to torrent shows by giving
them no other option, ESPN has just launched a killer new app that
brings the cable channel's shows to the mobile realm. There are a number
of "catches," though. WatchESPN is only available on iOS
, so those who
have the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad are invited, but everyone else is
left outside. There's no Android
version, no BlackBerry version, no
WebOS version and no Windows Phone 7 version. Maybe those will come in
time, but we wouldn't count on it.
Also, there are a number of programs that will be subject to blackout,
and Monday Night Football is one event that will not be shown on this
app. Bummer. But still, it's a solid app to have if you're already
paying for the channel via Time Warner Cable, Brighthouse Networks or
Verizon FiOS, but if you don't have access to any of those carriers,
you're also out of luck. We wish the app was al la carte, but that'll
probably never, ever happen. It's still a great start, and a great app,
but we wish it meant we were one step closer from being able to truly
separate from pay-TV. As it stands, you can't just be an Internet
subscriber, you'll need a pay-TV subscription.
The app itself is free and available to download right away.