The Nike Soccer App: Hit or Miss?

Nike unveils its football-dedicated app, promising to deliver products, content and access.

Adding to the burgeoning growth of street football is the recent launch of the Nike Soccer App. Available as a download for both iOS and Android, it’s being touted as a way to help you “play more soccer and stay in the know.”

WHAT THE APP PROMISES

The app is designed to enable users to set times and locations for pick-up matches, link up with football friends (referred to as “crews”), and get early access to the latest Nike products. It also provides training tips and promotes Nike-sponsored players and events, like the Día de los Muertos Tournament. Users are further enticed by the opportunity to meet some football heroes and attend exclusive Nike events with VIP treatment.

The Nike Soccer App hopes to draw users with the opportunity to meet pros.

WHAT THE APP ACTUALLY DOES

While Nike’s original content, like its short articles, video clips, and special offers is intriguing, the app itself feels like it’s still in the very early stages of real functionality. When we tried to find some cool street games or activities nearby, the app came up empty. There’s hardly anyone chatting and no discussions being had, which makes you feel like you’re wandering through a ghost town. What seems to be lacking are the interactive features needed to grow an active user community. We’re hoping Nike takes these early efforts and develops them into an inception point for street football on a global platform.

Good start with room for improvement.

HOW THE APP IS MARKETED

As part of its initial launch, Nike used L.A. and its street crews as a testing ground. The app liberally uses scenes, references, and shoes designed for the street game. It appears small-sided soccer, and more specifically, street football is finally getting some of the attention and respect it deserves. Nike has also tapped elite crews like Brazuca Ballers, Bola, Calle661, and Concrete Royalty, to act as brand ambassadors and encourage user adoption through regularly scheduled games.

THE VERDICT: The app is a nice effort overall, particularly in promoting street soccer as a core mission, but has a long way to go before it reaches wide user adoption. It would do well to build out its features to facilitate pick-up games and translate hypothetical users into a real community.