Apple's News change proves it still needs its own sports app

Apple News on iPhone and Mac
(Image credit: Apple)

Apple News will get a new Sports tab when iOS 16.5 is released with the change already live in the software's very first beta release.

Apple made the first iOS 16.5 beta available this week and one of the biggest changes is one that people have been asking for — Apple has put all of your sports stories in one place, making them easier to find when you want them. And easier to avoid when you don't.

The iOS 16.5 update is currently only available to those who are on the developer beta program with a public beta expected shortly, so those who want to keep their sports separate are still going to have to wait a little while.

Play ball!

Apple News continues to try and become the place that people go for their news, but having sports in the mix never quite felt like it was as organized as it could be. This change also continues Apple's semi-recent focus on sports following the arrival of Major League Baseball and Major League Soccer in the Apple TV app.

The Sports tab now plays home to information on live sports including current scores, with news also available below. It's still early days and this is indeed a beta, so it's possible that Apple will tweak things before it makes this update available to the wider world.

Sports fans will no doubt appreciate the change because they will be able to more easily find the content that they're looking for — it previously required scrolling below the For You section. Ideally, Apple would move all of its streaming sports content and sports news into its own app but, so far at least, it's refused that temptation.

Apple will no doubt be making bigger changes to the News app when iOS 17 is released later this year. It'll likely debut in June at WWDC before being released in September alongside what will instantly become the best iPhone yet, the iPhone 15 series.

Apple remains linked to further strengthening its interest in sports with discussions said to be ongoing surrounding the UK's Premier League soccer TV rights.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.