Why no sports score complications?
In the past several days since the release of watchOS2, there have been several threads asking about sports score complications. After doing a search on WatchAware, I was unable to locate a single one. This does not mean they don't exist; I just could not locate any. I was puzzled as to why. I really thought that any developer that planned to add such support to the watch would have the complication feature ready to go as soon as watchOS2 was released. This caused me to think about complications a little more in-depth.
Is this a hard thing to do? I do not write code and thus am not a developer. I thought that surely one of the major sports networks would take this on as an added feature for us watch users. Is anything like this offered in the Android Wear ecosystem? (I haven't looked). Do the promulgation of sports scores fall under certain rules imposed by the major sports authorities?
Another thing that occurred to me was the fact that a complication only allows a finite amount of data in a space tightly regulated by Apple. Depending on which watch face is selected, there are limited amounts of space to present sports data. For example, the circular fields would probably be excluded just by their size. But the largest point that occurred to me is something else that has drawn a lot of attention lately: Ads.
Advertising displayed on the iPhone screen, and even on the full watch screen is certainly one source of revenue for the purveyor of said information. And I haven't even begun to think how the ad blockers now allowed in iOS9 will impinge on those two forms of display. But when you look at a complication, things get complicated.
Let's say you have just one favorite team. You would make that your primary selection from a list, and any other team engaged in play with them are also displayed. Now, if you tap on the score complication, that opens the full screen app, at which point advertising could occur prior to or simultaneously with additional game information. But what if you're a true minimalist, and never delve into the full app beyond the scores displayed via the complication? True, you would probably be in the minority of such fans, but you would be getting information without the 'penalty' of advertising.
There are certainly ways to rectify this, such as a ! symbol displayed at the start of a game requiring you to open the full app X number of times during play. Or they could choose to go a subscription route, charging an in-app purchase per season.
Perhaps I'm reading too much into this and we will be flooded with sports score complications in the coming weeks.