Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

ESPN Retools Its Radio App for a Super Bowl Push

Fox has the rights to the Super Bowl this Sunday, but every other media outlet in the free world will take full advantage of the game up until kickoff. Here, for instance, is an app launch from ESPN–not a new app, but a refresh of its Radio app at Apple’s iTunes store, featuring all sorts of personalization bells and whistles.

Most impressive: Searchable audio that lets you sift through all of the network’s daily audio output to find mentions of your favorite teams, players, etc. So you can leave work, head to the gym and download, um, all of the day’s Clay Matthews news, without having to waste time Web surfing through the day. (Yes, you’re going to Web surf, anyway.)

The Disney-owned sports network isn’t changing the app’s price, which will stay at $2.99. ESPN says it has sold “hundreds of thousands” of the apps since it launched in September 2009. has signed on as the exclusive sponsor for the relaunch.

Meanwhile,’s audio ventures seem to be doing well across the board: reaches more than three million listeners per month, while multimedia star Bill Simmons’s podcast racked up 42 million downloads last year. (I’m responsible for a couple hundred, at least.)

ESPN says a version for Google’s Android platform is on the way.

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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus