Bringing the game from the field to your phone
New Jersey’s Rutgers University likes to lay claim as the birthplace of college football. As home to some of the most historic traditions in intercollegiate athletics, and team spirit deep in its roots, it’s no wonder the interest in and love for the Scarlet Knights run deep.
Given the latest advances in mobile platforms, Rutgers athletic department wondered if some of Rutgers’ “nonrevenue” sports could be made available on mobile devices, such as tablets and smartphones. Imagine, for example, watching a men’s soccer game, women’s field hockey or a swim meet in real time on a mobile device. Parents, alums, recruiters and recruits would be a ready audience for such an application. The goal was to find out if it was feasible.
Drawing from all of Rutgers current technologies, Hodges Digital Strategies developed a mobile application for both the iPhone and the iPad that utilized variations of the same design to make the best use of screen real estate for each device. The mobile application provides aggregated social media updates, RSS’d from Facebook and Twitter feeds into a social section of the app called the “Upstream.” It’s here that fans can view their favorite sporting events, from volleyball and soccer to wrestling and even “big” sports like basketball and football.
We guess you could say that the HDS development team knocked it out of the park, and within the first few months after launching the new app, Rutgers already had 2,500 downloads, an impressive number for a paid application that was targeted exclusively to the niche Rutgers community. About two-thirds of those downloads have been for the iPhone version, while the remaining downloads were specifically for the iPad version. With downloads growing every day, some anecdotal evaluation of the application can be seen on the numerous consumer review sites, including one app user who noted that the app “has everything the Rutgers athletics fan needs to follow his favorite team…well done.”