EXCLUSIVE: @cheerUpdates app Update V2.0 a sneek peek

In the spring of 2016 at Worlds, cheerUPDATES attempted to raise the stakes in the Allstar Cheerleading information game by creating its own APP. When version 1 was launched it was described as a test version for one competition (Worlds 2016) to shape the future of the app. There were also promises of many updates coming in the near future (if all went well with the beta test.) You can read my initial blog post about the app in April 2016 here: Is paying $5 for the CheerUpdates APP ridiculous?

As Worlds approached, sales of the highly anticipated app soared. The expectations of the app (which at the time was basically a beta version) soared as well. It was an extremely bold move considering the cheer world would be watching and any glitch or flaw would be exposed and talked about. CheerUPDATES did their best to set expectations on what the app would do on the initial launch. Unfortunately, many folks did not get the memo and were either misinformed or had unrealistic expectations.

Here were some of the criticisms of the app

  1. Scores did not load or were not updated in a timely fashion.
  2. The app was ugly, many did not like the font or design of the app.
  3. Many could not read the entire score as the app wrapped to the edge of the mobile screen and cut off numbers. ( This was fixed quickly)
  4. Most of the reviews in the app store complained about buying the app for Summit and it not working. (Well this is self-explanatory Summit does not include Worlds teams)

Some of the criticisms were valid, some were not. In response to the scores not updating in a timely fashion. CheerUpdates is held hostage by disputes and scoring hold ups. The scores were updated as soon as they were received. In some divisions at Worlds, that was literally a day later ( in some instances or divisions) this will never change in the app or on twitter. Even on the CheerUpdates twitter account you rarely get all of the scores from every division. As you already know, CheerUpdates will post a photo of the score sheet as they receive it (via twitter).

One important thing to keep in mind with cheeerUPDATES. When they post the performance of a team in real time on twitter that is not the official breakdown or listing of deductions from the judges, that is what cheerUPDATES sees within the performance. It is CU’s own opinion, not actual scores or deductions from the judges. (many people miss this concept). This is significant because users need to understand that what you see on twitter immediately following a performance is NOT the actual scores from the judges.

In regards to the app being ugly. Ok, it was. I am guessing they were focusing on functionality and capabilities not how pretty it looks for the first phase.

I have been told the app version 2.0 is in the final stages and is going to be launched soon.If you have already paid for the app,you are good. The update will push in the upcoming months. If you have not yet purchased the app and are interested, I will go through all the updates and new features and functionality step by step below.

(The views you are looking at are the perspective of the admin. Once launched the view for a user may vary slightly once launched) 

  • The app is NOT UGLY ANYMORE!!! (Of course, this will always be up for debate) but it looks much better.

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  • You will now be able to subscribe to a PROGRAM , DIVISION OR TEAM.
  • The app will also keep track of all levels 1-6. Whether you love to keep up with the Mini Level 1 teams or your favorite IOC6 team. cheerUPDATES has you covered. Disclaimer: UNLESS PREVIOUSLY NOTATED FULL LOWER LEVEL COVERAGE IS NOT A GUARANTEE cheerUPDATES is working on expanding coverage but similar to Worlds coverage, not every single comp will be covered with the levels 1-4, but the major comps you can expect will be covered.

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  • You will also be able to receive push notifications on the app when your favorite Program, Team or Division have updates.
  • It will handle complicated situations such as split and combined divisions. Displayed below on the right is an example of bid announcements Full Paid Partial Paid At Large etc…

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  • The app will also keep a history of performances , bids and results starting with the 2014-2015 season so you can see the history of you favorite program team or division. This will enable you to view who won the major competitions the previous year, what competition your favorite team or rival won their bid etc..This for me is a huge value add. For those who do not like researching on thousands of old posts on twitter or plundering through websites for previous years results this is a God send.

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Bottom line, if you have already paid for the app, good news you are going to get a powerful upgrade that will hopefully provide the value you expected from your $5 purchase. The update will happen late October or November just in time for competition season. If you were waiting on the sidelines, this may be exactly what you were expecting from the app. For some, it still may not be enough to persuade the twitter savvy from the free twitter feed. I for one am excited about the potential and see that for my minuscule $5 investment the app saves me time and provides convenience for this upcoming exciting season. For others, the jury may still be out. I guess that begs the question.

Is paying $5 for the CheerUpdates APP ridiculous?

Being the week of AllStar Cheerleading Worlds, there is no better time to announce one of the biggest game changers in Allstar Cheerleading. Earlier this week CheerUpdates started teasing something big. With many showcases going on before Worlds, this announcement had everyone scratching their head. This is always a big week for announcements and exciting info. What better time than now to launch?

The growth of CheerUpdates has been astounding. To think how much information is shared on a competition weekend should literally blow your mind. To say that the audience reached is similar to what the Super Bowl generates is not an exaggeration. The audience generated by this information in undeniable. All of this information we receive for FREE via Twitter.  Unfortunately, most of us take all this information for granted. The amount of work and attention that go into streamlining all this information is impressive. Twitter has its limitations as a mass information vehicle. Is there a better way to help you find what you are looking for quicker? CheerUpdates thinks so, and they have built an app to take information to the next level.

Many figured out the tease the day before on Tuesday 4/19/2016 and rushed to the app store but nothing was there. Many woke up on April 20th and found the app in the app store. The initial reaction when most saw the app in the store was: FIVE DOLLARS? Five dollars? I mean seriously are you kidding me? The question then becomes, is the five dollars worth it? There was not much to go off of in the app store. No Reviews, No screen shots, Nothing. What does this thing do? Well, below you will find out. I will walk you through step by step what I found upon purchasing the app this morning.

 

Once you purchase the app. You will log in with your Twitter account. The app will ask you for permission to send push notifications for privacy reasons. (good move). Upon logging in you will see the homepage which currently looks like this.

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At this point, it is pretty simple and straightforward, not much to see. You will notice a MENU button at the top left. Upon pressing it you will see this.

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Once in the Menu if you press the “COMPETITIONS” Button you will see this.

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If you press the “Worlds comp” you will see this.

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This is where the magic starts to happen. It does not take a genius to figure out how valuable the organization of this information is. Think about how you currently have to sort through following your favorite division. Endless scrolling and sifting through thousands of tweets and retweets and manually trying to memorize where everyone stands in the division decoding abbreviation after abbreviation due to the character limitations of Twitter. THIS FOR MOST CHEER FANS IS PRICELESS and in my opinion worth tons more than $5. Once you press the division you want to follow you will see this screen. File_001

At the time of this blog post obviously, there is no WORLDS information loaded YET. You can see how it is going to work by looking at the screen. It is broken down by day, also noted will be if the team has an At-Large, Partial Paid or Full Paid Bid.

The first question I asked myself? Will there be a delay in the scoring? Will it take longer to get the information via the app than on TWITTER? My sources say as soon as the scores become available CheerUpdates will apply them to the associated team and will auto order the standings based on incoming scores in the app. How cool is that? Some other features you do not yet see, but need to know about!

  1. Cheer programs will be stored and added so as to easily select them for each event over the course of the year. 
  2. The app will also store competition scores and results during the course of the year for easy access to track how your favorite division (or team in the future) is progressing.

I have also been granted access to some screen shots that will help demonstrate what the app will look like once filled with info. This should give you a better idea of what to expect in the future and for your $5.

In conclusion, my opinion on this app is that for $5 it’s an absolute no-brainer TAKE MY MONEY. The future possibilities of where this app could go are endless. There is also currently a “Bid Declarations” selection that is obviously blank at this point. I am sure more info will come soon on that soon. If I can read into what it is there for, you should be able to assign bids to teams etc. How cool would it be to be notified once your favorite team earns a worlds bid (in the future)?

I like that at this point, it is clean and simple. I feel the biggest mistake many  new app makes is they try to jam too many capabilities into one app and it becomes clunky. CheerUpdates understands what their audience wants and has done a great job responding to the needs of the audience. Hopefully, the app will overcome the limitations that twitter brings by opening up a new era in information exchange for Allstar Cheer fans. For that reason alone, I am supporting CheerUpdates and donating my $5 to this cause. Early indications are that this app is currently exploding in the app store right now. As this goes to press it is the number 1 paid sports app and climbing the charts with a flash. WOW!

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My thumbs already fall off refreshing my phone trying to keep up with all my favorite teams at competitions. Heck, most of us gladly pay for a cable TV bill that is 20 TIMES more expensive than that PER MONTH! I guarantee you most of you use thumbs more on your phone trying to keep up with CheerUpdates more than you watch your TV.

How this app will work for the first time remains to be seen. We have all shelled out much more for streaming competitions where performance is up or down. Ultimately, the choice is yours. In answering the question, “Is paying $5 for the CheerUpdates APP ridiculous?” Hopefully, I have helped you understand the early answer to that question is a resounding NO. Please feel free to share your opinions in the comment section below. I would love an honest dialogue or ideas on where this app should go next!