Published February 3, 2014
Fox Sports last night delivered a clean, no-frills online stream of Super Bowl XLVIII, the network’s first attempt at streaming the NFL’s title game. Unlike last year’s Super Bowl stream by CBS Sports, Fox Sports’ effort this year did not include alternate camera angles due to contractual ties between the NFL and technology sponsor Microsoft. But the Super Bowl stream did include the first-ever, Spanish-language digital distribution of the game, as well as the first-ever deployment of the Super Bowl through a mobile application. Fox Sports used its Fox Sports Go app, with its user authentication requirements lifted for the day, to serve tablet-based users. The online coverage lagged behind the TV coverage by about 15 seconds, not unlike many digital simulcasts of televised sports. Fox Sports also included an American Sign Language interpreter during the entire online broadcasts of “America The Beautiful” and the National Anthem. As was the case each of the prior two years, the digital Super Bowl stream featured a separate set of commercials from the TV broadcast
. Fox Sports sold time to 31 different companies, more than twice the 15 companies that purchased online inventory last year and more than six times the five companies that bought into the debut Super Bowl online stream two years ago. Many of the ads -- including ones from Chevy and the American Cancer Society, Toyota, Sonos and Pizza Hut, among others -- were deliberately timed to run at or near the same time both on TV and online. Fox also aggressively touted during the digital stream several elements of its own TV programming lineup, including postgame airings of “New Girl” and “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” as well as “The Following,” "Cosmos,” “American Idol,” sister network FX’s “The Strain,” cable counterpart FS1 and Fox Sports’ upcoming coverage of the Daytona 500.