For fans of American Football, this past Sunday was a holy day. Super Bowl LI (51), the annual championship for the sport, matched the New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons. There’s something for everybody – a great game, forward thinking ads, and a half time show (this year featuring Lady Gaga). Yet, for the streaming media business there was something else to watch this year – the quality of the live stream.
The carrier of Super Bowl LI, Fox, utilized a multiCDN strategy to deliver the free live stream to those die hard fans turning in on their web connected devices. They also took care to dial back the bitrate from 5 to 3.5 Mbps in the interest of improving the quality of the playback. Taking these steps benefitted Fox, as Super Bowl LI was the most watched super bowl in history across platforms.
Although telecast ratings fell compared to 2016, an increase in OTT traffic helped Super Bowl LI break more than just in-game records. The total online audience this year was 7 million, exceeding last year’s numbers.
Yet the stream was not perfect, for a brief time many users were locked out of the stream as a result of technical difficulties, but sooner than not the stream reengaged and user’s returned to their playback, a welcome relief from last year.
Managing multiCDN, reducing bitrates, and other playback metrics to optimize a video stream, especially one of the caliber as Super Bowl LI, is no easy task. Fortunately there are resources like YOUBORA, the business intelligence and video analytics platform by NPAW which – through the use of real-time, uncompressed data – can empower OTT providers with a thorough understanding of how their platform performs and their audience behaves. .
Are you a content provider interested in changing the way you stream video? Click here to schedule a meeting with one of our online video analytics and business intelligence experts.
Just another thing to think about from us here at NPAW.
James Noeker on February 10th 2017
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