Last Sunday, an estimated 103.4 million people tuned in around the world to watch the Philadelphia Eagles’ historic victory over the New England Patriots, 41-33. While the Eagles made history on the field by claiming the franchise’s first ever championship, if you are an owner of one of the 6.1 million unique devices that streamed Sunday’s game, you helped make history off the field as well.
According to NBC Sports, Sunday’s big game was the most live-streamed championship game ever. In fact, it actually delivered an average minute audience of 2.02 million viewers, and peaked at 3.1 million concurrent streams.
NBC also notes that the in-game average minute audience was up a whopping 152% from its streaming coverage of 2015’s game.
Streaming the biggest games of the year has emerged as an ever-growing trend amongst sports fans. As a matter of fact, last October during the World Series, YouTube partnered with Major League Baseball (MLB) in order to promote it’s paid online streaming service, which then live-streamed all seven matchups between the Houston Astros and the Los Angeles Dodgers.
And NBC Sports is also on a path to continue shattering streaming records in sports as they prepare to live stream 1,800 hours of the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea, later this month.
Just as technology has changed the way games are played over the last several years, through the incorporation of instant replay, it has also changed the way we watch them. Whether it’s the World Series or the World Cup, more and more sports fans are turning to live streaming. And if Sunday’s game is any indication of what we can expect in the future, it is safe to say that we should continue to see this trend grow and continue for years to come.