Sports Viewership: From the Satellite to the Internet

Have you ever thought about how you will be watching sports in ten years? Will it be with your traditional satellite tv station or via the so-called Internet of Things? Times are changing along with our usual activities. Now, we are able to combine them (usual activities) with the new technological trends and enjoy a better experience; doing the same things but in different ways.

The acronym, OTT, has appeared a lot in news stories throughout the last year, but what does it mean? OTT is short for “over-the-top,” a term used for the delivery of film and TV content via the internet, without requiring users to subscribe to a traditional cable or satellite paid-TV service such as Netflix or Time Warner Cable.

Television is one of the biggest and powerful industries related to sports. It is how teams such as Manchester United, Yankees, Dallas Cowboys, FC Barcelona, Real Madrid and domestic leagues like Premier League, MLB, NBA, La Liga can reach any target audience in the world. However, it is not only about the target, money also plays a very important part, because the revenues that each organization receives from their TV rights is one of the biggest contributions to their annual budget.

To make the picture as clear as possible, take a look at the broadcasting revenues from the 2017/2018 season for the biggest teams across all major football leagues.

KPMG Football Benchmark 

 KPMG Football Benchmark

As you can see, the numbers are impressive. But now let’s discuss the present and the future. Since Facebook was created, social media has become a way to interact with other people. But, what if there is another hidden agenda that we haven’t explored yet?

In the next days, Twitter will stream the second half of some NBA games, but the camera will focus on a single player. Although they did not officially reveal the amount, it is safe to assume the blue bird iconed platform invested a lot of money in this deal, that is for sure.

Facebook pays about $1 million per game to show 25 Major League Baseball (MLB) games worldwide for no fee, solely supported by advertising. Next season, in the UK, Amazon will bundle 20 English Premier League matches with its Prime subscription service. Sky and BT currently share the rights to show live games on TV.

Recently, Facebook bought La Liga broadcasting rights to show the Spanish football matches in the India region. The agreement (the company did not disclose payment figures for the broadcasting rights. Sony Pictures Network paid $32 million last time they were for sale in 2014) allows the social platform to show all 380 matches for the 2018/19 season, to users in India, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, the Maldives, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan. Also, all matches in the second division of Spanish soccer will be streamed live for free via YouTube to any country that doesn’t have a television broadcast deal for the competition.

The list is expected to continue growing in the coming years (with UEFA and La Liga, both developing ideas to release their own OTT platforms), and the way we watch sports today will, indeed, change in the next 5 years. These examples show how the world is becoming more connected due to the advancement and introduction of new technological tools. In the same light, TAGPAY’S technology is also supporting this movement: helping the sports world become more engaged.


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