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Summary:

The NBA has dramatically updated its mobile offerings for the 2009-10 season, including a new application for the iPhone and Android that provides live video streams of games. NBA League Pass Mobile costs $39.99 for the season, and gives users access to more than 40 live […]

The NBA has dramatically updated its mobile offerings for the 2009-10 season, including a new application for the iPhone and Android that provides live video streams of games.

nbawifiNBA League Pass Mobile costs $39.99 for the season, and gives users access to more than 40 live games each week. It identifies a user’s location via GPS in order to block access to the nearest local team, but other than that, the MobiTV-powered app is all-you-can-eat.

I tried out League Pass Mobile last night and it looked great, especially on Wi-Fi. The app includes live DVR capabilities, adaptive bitrate streaming, on-demand access to games for 48 hours, live stats, push alerts, and the ability to turn off all that information while you’re watching a game and just want to experience it in real time.

The app is not yet available publicly, but it should be out ASAP, definitely before the end of the week. Update: iPhone version is here. And paying users of NBA League Pass Broadband will have to open up their wallets again; the two products aren’t bundled.

In my testing on an iPhone (see gallery of screenshots below), the 3G stream, which AT&T ratchets down to start at 240 Kbps, crapped out on me a bit, which sucks if you’ve paid 40 bucks for it. NBA Digital general manager Bryan Perez said to expect streaming quality to improve over the course of the season. “Convenience can be just as important as the content itself,” Perez said. “Just because it’s not in HD doesn’t mean it’s not adding tremendous value to your quality of life.”

Along with the big-money video app, NBA Digital is upgrading last year’s Game Time app to a paid version ($9.99) and still giving out a free “Lite” version. The paid version, available for iPhone, Android and BlackBerry devices, includes live audio feeds for every game — including those in your local market — as well as stats, video highlights and push alerts. The free app has scores, standings and schedules. So if you care most about not having your local team’s games blacked out, this app’s for you.

Perez told us he thinks the NBA stacks up well in digital vs. other major sports leagues because it has the youngest demographic, though he admitted that Major League Baseball has been pioneering the business models for sports delivered digitally. He contended the NBA has the immense advantage of having all its assets under one roof between television, Internet and mobile, along with a vested interest on the part of Turner to promote digital projects. Next up, Perez said NBA Digital is looking to partner with regional sports providers to try to offer in-market access to games, which would have to be a major boost to usage.

 
  1. [...] Written on October 29, 2009 by Josh Pigford and No one has commented Liz at NewTeeVee has the scoop and a preview of the future of live sports (or at least basketball) on your [...]

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  2. [...] Edit Staff | Thursday, October 29, 2009 | 8:14 AM PT | 0 comments | 0 tweets retweet » NBA launches live game video for iPhone and Android (NewTeeVee) The tech vendors that will cash in on the smart grid stimulus fund (Earth2Tech) Netbook [...]

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  3. [...] Liz Gannes at NewTeeVee takes an early look at this $39.99 season pass application and came away generally impressed. The software and subscription provides access to 40 games each week, although any local team events could be blacked out — the app cleverly uses your handset’s GPS to define “local.” You can see by the screen cap above that streaming over Wi-Fi looks great. Streaming over 3G however, was hit or miss during the NewTeeVee testing, which is semi-surprising — the application uses adaptive bitrate streaming, but of course you have to have some minimum throughput for even that to work. I like how there’s some DVR functionality in there — it’s always nice to replay that killer slam-dunk. [...]

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  4. Local black-outs? If I am paying for the content, shouldn’t the blackout restrictions be lifted?!

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    1. @Ryan and Dave you are both right. The $10 audio app has no blackouts, while the $40 video app does have blackouts.

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  5. Does this work anywhere in the world or just USA?

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    1. @Jerry: Got a reply for you “At the moment it is just US and Canada but rollout of international access should happen in a few weeks.”

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  6. [...] NBA Launches Live Game Video for iPhone and Android – Newteevee.comThe NBA has dramatically updated its mobile offerings for the 2009-10 season, including a new application for the iPhone and Android that provides live video streams of games. NBA League Pass Mobile costs $39.99 for the season, and gives users access [...]

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  7. [...] Idea and pictures via NBA Launches Live Game Video for iPhone and Android [...]

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  8. @Ryan…

    You’re reading too quickly again. Aren’t you? Try it one more time:

    Along with the big-money video app, NBA Digital is upgrading last year’s Game Time app to a paid version ($9.99) and still giving out a free “Lite” version. The paid version, available for iPhone, Android and BlackBerry devices, includes live audio feeds for every game — including those in your local market — as well as stats, video highlights and push alerts. The free app has scores, standings and schedules. So if you care most about not having your local team’s games blacked out, this app’s for you.

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  9. Way too expensive.

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  10. [...] The NBA has dramatically updated its mobile offerings for the 2009-10 season, including a new application for the iPhone and Android that provides live video streams of games. [...]

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