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The London Games: Top iPhone Apps for the 2012 Olympics

Olympic_Rings_HeartsThe Summer Olympics are back! Four long years have passed since Michael Phelps hauled eight gold medals home from Beijing, and this year he looks to become the most decorated Olympian ever. He's won 16 total medals; the all-time record stands at 18. In London, he is scheduled to swim in seven events.

US Olympic beach volleyball duo, Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh, have won two straight gold medals. Since Beijing, Walsh has had two babies and May-Treanor has recovered from a torn Achilles tendon; however, both are confident they have a shot at gold again this year.

As the London Games begin tonight, I can hardly contain my excitement. But with so many events and the added challenge of an eight-hour time difference, I'm planning to lean on my trusty iPhone to help organize my viewing.

Here are some of the top 2012 Olympic iPhone apps.

NBC Olympics

This free NBC Olympics mobile app, presented by GE, has tons of pre-Games features to get you revved up for any and every event, including:

  • Top news, overall and by specific sport
  • Athlete bios, news, videos and photos

As the Games get underway, the app will include:

  • Schedules and results in real-time
  • TV listings and online coverage
  • Push notifications for program reminders, breaking news, and results for your favorite athletes

Reviews online claim this mobile app is slow, but I found the videos to be of high quality and just as fast as most videos I view on my phone. Download the iPhone app here.

London 2012 Olympic Games2012 Team USA Road to London Olympics 

The free Team USA app (download the mobile app here) is the official app provided by the United States Olympic committee, featuring the making of Team USA (Olympics and Paralympics) and their achievements in London.

This app includes: 

  • News
  • Athlete bios
  • Event schedules (though as of the week before Opening Ceremonies, the schedule was not up to date)
  • Team USA shop
  • A donation page

Reviews for the Team USA iPhone app indicate lags in load-time and jerky scrolling. I have to agree that the app is too slow and add that it’s not as easy to sort by personal interest. For example, I can’t easily isolate news about swimming or beach volleyball.

London 2012 (Summer Games) 

This free mobile app by Vishal Shah is one of the highest rated for the London Olympics. The app includes a simple and well-designed user interface giving information like:

  • A list of Olympic games with search functionality
  • Key facts (did you know rowing is the only sport where competitors cross the finish line backwards?)
  • Venue information
  • Medal Rankings
  • Notable athlete information 

The only drawback to this app relate to the fact that it is British-centric, which doesn’t help me with the time zone confusion or scheduling issues. Also, I’d like more background information on some of the US athletes. Download the free mobile app here.

Olympic Games London 2012 Schedules In Your Calendar

This app (download here), at 99 cents, allows you to add Olympic schedules to your iPhone calendar in your local time zone. Calendars are even updated with start lists and results, so for those of us who can’t keep track of all our favorite events, this might be the ultimate Olympic companion.


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