The NBA redesigned its app for the TikTok era | Engadget


The 2022-23 season is right around the corner and the league is stealing a march on opening night with of its iOS and Android app. The new version places a lot of focus on vertical videos, which fits right in with the modern age of social media.

For one thing, it rips a page right out of the TikTok playbook with a vertically scrolling For You feed, which will feature real-time highlights from ongoing games. The page will be personalized with the help of Microsoft Azure and Azure AI (Microsoft is the NBA’s cloud and AI partner) and feature recommended content that’s based on fan preferences.

In addition, the league has integrated its subscription services, and NBA TV, into the app. It says NBA League Pass members will have access to live streams of out-of-market games with higher video quality and lower streaming latency. Subscribers will be able to watch games with alternate camera angles, check out betting-focused versions of streams and try analytics-driven options. There will be Spanish, Portuguese and Korean commentary feeds too.

Alongside the relaunch of the app, the NBA has lowered the price of League Pass subscriptions for a limited time. The standard package is currently $15 per month or $100 for the season, and $20 per month or $130 for the entire season if you opt for the premium package. The bundle includes access to NBA TV.

Elsewhere on the content front, the app will feature streams from pre- and post-game press conferences and media days, teams’ pregame shows for League Pass games and a show centered about NBA culture and lifestyle. There will also be weekly shows focused on highlights and betting. International pre-season games in Japan and Abu Dhabi will stream live on the app as well.

You’ll have access to several docuseries, including a seven-episode one called Gold Blooded that focuses on the Golden State Warriors’ run to the 2022 title. The first episode is on the app now. In Pass The Rock, which will debut in late November, you’ll gain some insight into the NBA’s hottest new stars, on and off the court. There will be archival content too, including documentaries, 500 classic games and every Finals game since 2000.

On top of all that, the league is introducing a free membership program called NBA ID, which can be linked to a NBA League Pass subscription. NBA ID will offer benefits and rewards including original content and material from the league’s vault. Members will also gain access to exclusive experiences from NBA partners, ticket deals, prizes from NBA Pick’Em fantasy games and more.

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