Review: MetroTour


With the Tour de France on right now (and the final stage happening on July 22), fans of the flagship cycling race might want to have a look at MetroTour, a third party app that keeps you in touch with details on the annual spectacle. It includes stage maps, timings, standings, a dedicated Twitter feed, and more.

Author: Sebasiaan den Boer

Version Reviewed:

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MetroTour is in a great spot for a third party application - it's been developed by someone with a passion for the topic, it has a very tight and detailed focus and it's subject matter rich with information.

On top of all of that, you have an application that follows the Metro UI style guide, resulting in an application that feels like it belongs on your phone. I think I would have preferred the application to follow the theme choices, rather than default to its own light theme and yellow spot colour, but there is always going to be a balance between developer branding and user choice, and I don't see that changing soon.

The app opens up on a live tile styled menu screen, where you can jump around the data on offer. This includes information on the teams and riders, the different stages of the Tour, all the current standings for the various contests that happen as part of the Tour (including the sprints and hill climbing contests).

It's all very comprehensive, and with a contest the size of the Tour, bringing you all the comprehensive results and timings is an important thing to do - and MetroTour does it with an easy to navigate layout.

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What's missing is the 'to the minute' live timings of the Tour, but developer Sebastiaan den Boer does have a Twitter feed (@MetroTourApp) he posts to with the major news during each stage, which is read and displayed by the application. It's a smart way to get information into the app without having to worry about a huge server structure, even if the nature of Twitter means it's not as detailed as some might expect. I'm prepared to give MetroTour a bit of slack here, as it is an unofficial app and likely doesn't have access to the real time data.

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MetroTour does a wonderful job of bringing you the important numbers from the Tour De France. The Twitter feed portion of the app just about makes up for a lack of 'headlines' and news feeds, and in a way I much prefer having the raw data in this application, from the stage result to tracking the King of the Mountain contest, and to see what's going on myself.

It's a rest day on the Tour today, but all the fun kicks off again tomorrow in Macon as the Tour winds through the mountains and back up to the finish in Paris. Having looked at lots of sports news apps, MetroTour is a great addition to the stable, and an easy way to stay in touch with the Tour.

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