SBD/August 16, 2012/Media
NBC Sports Network Scores With Olympics, Now Seeks Way To Sustain Audience
Published August 16, 2012
STREAM-LINED: The WALL STREET JOURNAL's Miriam Gottfried writes for NBC, "a more remarkable feat" than the net's ratings "may have been its apparent success" with live streaming the London Games. NBC Sports indicated that pay-TV customers "registered 9.9 million devices on NBCOlympics.com or on the NBCOlympics Live Extra app for mobile devices -- believed to be the most ever for a single, 'TV Everywhere' event." NBC's experience also "demonstrated the rising importance of online streaming to paying cable subscribers as a way of retaining customers in the face of so-called cord cutting." While streaming content across digital devices to paying cable subscribers "isn't an antidote to cord-cutting," NBC's Olympics experience "shows networks may have ways to manage the transition away from traditional TV viewing" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 8/16).
NEIGHBORS TO THE NORTH: The GLOBE & MAIL's Bruce Dowbiggin writes, "Canadians couldn’t get enough of the Olympic coverage live and on tape via the TV consortium of Bell and Rogers." The Consortium indicated that "viewership was up" 88% over the '08 Beijing Games. TV viewership in Canada increased 13% "during the Games versus the same days last year." The ratings "justify CTV’s gamble in borrowing the Games’ rights from CBC for four years." But it likely "still won’t turn the 2010/ 2012 Olympic package (bought for $153-million) into a financial winner." Had the Consortium’s "healthy digital numbers produced similarly healthy revenues, they might have broken even" (GLOBE & MAIL, 8/16).