Keeping up with the World Cup digitally

(CNN) — As World Cup action kicks off, social media tools can help fans stay in the game with their smartphones when they can’t be in Rio or in front of a TV. While those in Brazil will party it up, millions of others, will get wrapped up in the futbol frenzy, from afar.

The global scope of the World Cup means the big names in social media have tools with the goal of making it easy to follow game play, from anywhere. Twitter users can show their team spirit with a hashtag in front of a country’s three-letter country code, like USA, which creates a “hashflag” icon, no limit to how many can appear within a tweet.

Facebook has a page to keep tabs on what’s trending, including an interactive map showing top athletes and who’s rooting them on around the globe.

A popular way to learn more about those unfamiliar teams is to Google them. The search engine has a hub dedicated to what’s trending among World Cup matchups, plus maps that feature peeks inside all 12 stadiums, at field level.

For a comprehensive guide to World Cup play, the official tournament app from FIFA has the latest news, a schedule of all 64 matches, and details on the 32 teams.

Copyright CNN 2014 (modified for web)

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