The Boxing News App is here but what exactly is it and what does it mean for fans and the industry? Dec Taylor speaks to Boxing News Chief Technology Officer, Benyamin Farooqi and Adam Patton, Managing Director of CheckD Dev to find out more.

In a nutshell, what is the Boxing News app?

AP: It’s a place where boxing enthusiasts can have their say and test their knowledge against other fans from around the world. It’s also a place where you can keep up-to-date with the latest news, videos and content direct from the Boxing News team.

BF: The Boxing News app has a mixture of features, all of which address key pain points for boxing fans. The four key features are: a prediction league, live scorecard functionality, ringwalk reminder notifications and the Boxing News content feed.

Why does our sport need it?

BF: I think there are a number of reasons we need this app:

The Live Scorecard feature gives fans a chance to have their say, to respond to the bad decisions we see all too often. When 99 per cent of fans have a different opinion to the judges, we can show that data and users can share it.

The Prediction League is something you see in other sports and for the first time ever, boxing fans can not only compete against their friends, but also test their knowledge against industry experts in order to climb the leaderboard for a chance to win cash prizes.

The Ringwalk Reminder feature will send a push notification to your phone as fighters enter the ring, meaning you never have to miss a fight again, whether at home or abroad.

AP: On a more general level, we feel that boxing is crying out for this type of product, where fans can interact and compete with each other in a light-hearted, fun manner.

How will the Prediction League work?

BF: The Prediction League is really intuitive, and has a great user interface, which makes it easy to navigate. When you select an event, you will be prompted with a selection of fights from that card. You simply select who you think will win, along with method of victory. There is also a tie-breaker, in case we have multiple players finishing in the top spot.

AP: This particular aspect is something that seems obvious, but no one else is really doing at the moment. There’s endless amounts of free to play football games that simply ask users to log their prediction on a week-by-week basis and allow users to compete and even win prizes, and yet nothing significant for boxing where we know the spikes around major events are bigger than most individual football matches. It’s super quick and easy to get your opinion across and adds a bit of fun to some of the fights you are less bothered about.

Why is an app like this preferable to a website or social media platform?

AP: We have a lot of experience in this area, and felt like some of the functionality we wanted to include in this product deserved a fully native app. This means we can deliver a premium user experience, and a super-fast and responsive product that can live alongside the users consumption of content during fight week, and particularly on fight night itself.  Using an app also allows us to lean on certain tools such as the push notifications for Ringwalk Reminders.

How will the scorecard feature work?

BF: Once a fight starts, it will go live within the app, opening access to the scorecard feature for that fight. It allows you to submit your score, round by round, and share your final scorecard on social media at the click of a button. You can also see, in real-time, how other fans are scoring the fight in the app.

AP: The app uses the latest technology to update in real time without a refresh. It’s quite addictive watching the voting change on a round-by-round basis live in the app. It’s also an ideal tool for people to use in order to share their views on the fight via Social Media and with their friends. The app exports an easy to read Scorecard that breaks down the fight in a round-by-round view.

The app marketplace is a busy one, why is this app unique?

AP: While the app marketplace is a busy one, it’s not particularly busy in Boxing and there is certainly nothing like the Boxing News app. Plus, this is just the launch version of the app, we have a solid roadmap of features planned to further enrich the user experience, and give the fans even more unique ways of expressing their opinions.

BF: This is something new and innovative, that provides fans with a lot of solutions. Also, in CheckD and Boxing News, you have two of the best teams in their respective fields developing the product, and with great plans to drive it forward.

How do you hope to build a community around the app?

AP: Initially we will be hoping people want to come and express their views with the other users in the app, compete for prizes and use the app to illustrate their opinions online. It’s being discussed whether we will introduce some forum style facilities in the future, which is an obvious angle to help build the community, but we feel some of the unique features we already have as well the unique channels to promote the app will be enough to entice a nucleus of users to start to build that community.

BF: I think the league and the scorecard functionality will be widely adopted by fans and those within the industry, this will help drive that sense of community around the app.

Will there be fighters on the app too?

BF: Yes. We’ve got a number of industry experts, fighters, coaches, journalists and influencers all lined up and ready to submit their predictions in the app. We will also be introducing verified user status for some of these users in a future update. So, unlike some of the other fantasy apps and prediction leagues out there, in the Boxing News Prediction League you can compete against some of the most well-known names in the industry.

How long has this taken to build?

AP: This concept has been something we have been working on for a while as CheckD in the background, without having a suitable partner to get it out and in front of the fans, it then took us 6 months to build on the foundations we had to create this bespoke app for the Boxing News team with the expanded suite of features.

Will the app continue to grow with new features and ideas?

AP: Definitely, we have a long list of ideas of features we think will work, though we want to get this basic version of the app out and into the hands of the fans so we can get their feedback and tailor it to what the audience wants. From scoring classic fights during watchalongs, to having a fan-powered pound-for-pound rankings we have many different things we can do here to further enhance the connection between the fans and the sport.

BF: We have a huge archive going back to 1909, so that’s something I would love to see accessible via the app, and maybe we’ll even incorporate the functionality to stream some boxing shows going forward. But, like Adam said, there are so many opportunities with the app, and we are keen to build it around the wants and needs of the boxing fans.

Download the Boxing News app

Download the Boxing News app for iOS

Download the Boxing News app for Android