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8 great tablet apps to stay on top of the London Olympics

by Doug Drinkwater

July 27 2012

The London 2012 Olympics are here and with that come 302 sporting events across 26 different sports in just over two weeks.

With that in mind, TabTimes looks at eight Olympic-specific tablet apps to keep you up-to-date on everything from watching the events to perusing the medal table.

NBC Olympics Live Extra

The Olympics is going to be big for second-screen (or TV companion) tablet apps and that’s certainly something broadcaster NBC is aiming for with its Live Extra app.

The application (free on iTunes and Google Play) will not just offer live streaming and replays of all 302 events, it will also enable you to toggle camera angles, follow your favorite sports and receive push notifications when events are about to start.

Note: The app is only accessible in the U.S. and certain U.S. territories, and you'll need an active subscription to a cable or satellite package that includes CNBC and MSNBC to watch the live streams.

Roambi Cardex 

Business intelligence expert Roambi has teamed up with data specialist Infostrada Sports to launch two Olympics apps that are more for than your usual sports fans; they're for data freaks.

Roambi Cardex is the first of those apps (for iPhone and iPad) and offers up a medals forecast per country based on previous summer games, all of which are displayed on cabinet-style charts.

You can move your favorite nations into a toolbar on the right and - further proving that this app is for wannabe boffins - you can even check out how many golds each country will win per 1,000,000 people in the country (in case you're wondering, that's a lowly 1.074 for Great Britain and 0.289 for the U.S).

Roambi Layers

An iPad only app, Roambi Layers goes even further and displays historical and forecasted medal counts per country for each event. For instance, it shows Jamaica should win 14 golds in Athletics (presumably mostly in sprinting), with most of these being won by women.

Users can manipulate the data by pinching and swiping at each country to drill down into the data. 

Here's the annoying part however. To download Cardex or Layers you need to install the free Roambi Visualizer app on the App Store, and click here on your iPad. From there, you'll need to click 'connect' at the top left hand corner, hit 'Roambi Samples' and then you'll be able access the apps via the 'Infostrada Sports' section.

NBC Olympics 

Another app from NBC, this app (free on iTunes and Google Play) is available for the iPad and for Android tablets and presents free live updates on every event, medal counts, results and event schedules, while sharing options include Facebook and Twitter.

The app runs Adobe's AIR interface, and can be a bit choppy, but is a solid all-rounder for the latest news and videos.

London 2012 Results

Sponsored by Samsung, this free app (for iPad and Android) is a great portal for checking out when the next live events are, perusing the medals table as well as the latest news of your favoured country.

There’s also an online shop for merchandise and – currently – a live countdown to the opening ceremony.

London 2012 Game 

This is definitely one for frustrated athletes. The London 2012 Game app is available for both iPad and Android tablets and allows you to create an avatar, choose your country and compete in a selection of events.

It’s a fairly basic, social game, albeit littered with cheesy music and too many stats, and it's excellent fun for all ages. Those looking to progress their virtual career can always upgrade to the $1.99 version, which offers more gaming credits. 

Reuters London 2012

The new iPad’s Retina Display really lends itself well to hi-res photography and this is something Reuters is looking to tap into with its London 2012 iPad app, which it claims will offer the “world’s best Olympics photography”.

The app is well laid out, visually very attractive, and offers a reference menu for you to pull up the day-by-day schedule of the games, results, the medal table and even configure push notifications and how you can share content.

The app’s photo stream is the best part of the app, displaying the latest hi-res photos of the Olympics, and you can tap on each photo to get a full-screen view. You can flip between days and share photos via Facebook and Twitter.

Team USA Road to London 

In the hope of keeping fans up to date with their travels, Team USA has launched a ‘Road to London’ iPad app (free, iTunes).

Although sometimes slow to load, the app promises video diaries, the latest news and embedded tweets from the athletes, while you can also check out the event schedule, and the Team USA shop.

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