Online options for upcoming Sochi Olympics

XXII olypics

As the XXII Winter Olympics rapidly nears fans of events will soon be scanning broadcast times to see if they will manage to be home from work in time to view various competitions live, but cable, telco and satellite customers should have a very nice alternative.

The reason is that for the first time all of the competition will be available live streamed by NBC sports on its and its NBC Sports Live Extra app to the nation’s 100+ million cable, satellite and telco customers. An estimated 1,000 hours of live broadcasts are expected to be available.

Fans will benefit in two ways from the networks largesse: The online coverage will include all 15 sports as well as each medal winning performance in all 98 separate events. The second is the cost, which is no additional cost, as in free — as long as you have a qualifying cable or other broadband service video plan.

Then there is also a pair of additional bonuses. Viewers also get access to online coverage of the US Olympics Team Trials prior to the start of the games and during the games they will have access to a host of additional programming including exclusive content, real-time results, medal standings, event highlights and analysis, athlete interviews and profiles, and rewinds of all event coverage.

While a portion of the live streaming will be available to everybody the bulk will only be available to subscribers of satellite, telco or cable networks. Viewers have to be authenticated as being paid subscribers.

In order to get verified simply:
1. Go to
2. Click the “Verify Now” button
3. Select your cable, satellite or telco provider
4. Enter the username and password that corresponds with your account
5. Upon verification of your subscription to an Olympics-eligible package, you will be signed in throughout the Games on that device!

It would make sense to do so early since NBC expects that it will have the most devices verified to view the Sochi Olympics for any sporting event ever, most likely dwarfing the 9.9 million devices that were verified for the recent London Olympic Games. You can verify for multiple devices, but must go through the process for each device.

‘Way harder, intense look’ at Mobile Sports Production Underway at Turner Sports, exec says

Picture of mobile sports broadcast visionary Michael AdamsonThere’s a large enough audience for mobile sports to spark Turner Sports to take a “way harder, more intense” look at mobile sports production, according to a recently posted Beet.TV video.

According to Michael Adamson, VP of Sports New Products, Turner Sports, the proof is the 2011 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship Tournament, which saw a 17 percent increase in online sports video consumption and a 63 percent increase in total viewership for March Madness on Demand (MMOD).

More mobile sports viewers “than we thought”

“For the first time, we saw a significant enough portion of our audience consume live games on mobile (to cause Turner) to take a way harder, more intense look at mobile video production,” said Adamson in the Beet.TV video. “It really pushed our numbers higher on mobile than we thought was going to happen this year.”

The “take” numbers across all of Turner Sports, CBS Sports and NCAA online, online streaming and mobile application rates are now large enough to warrant exploration into broadcasts tailored to mobile sports consumers, said Adamson.

“Most of our video streaming experiences that we’ve done for sports have been simulcasts or experiments with alternate-angle live streams,” said Adamson. “Now, we’re starting to think more about how to make sure we sync mobile video with broadcast, or how we sync syncing mobile video with mobile data. How do we make mobile video available as both companion (viewing) and primary (viewing) experience, and tie advertising in?”

Adamson’s comments are good news for the mobile sports consumer. In addition to March Madness, Turner Sports broadcasts NBA on TNT, Major League Baseball on TBS, NASCAR on TNT and PGA Championship and PGA Grand Slam golf.

iPad for sports extraordinary

Adamson said Turner Sports was wowed by the iPad viewership of March Madness, as well as the behavior patterns of mobile sports consumers watching hoops on the device.

“People were using the iPad more like a TV than a mobile device,” he said. “I don’t know that we would have expected that but we definitely saw it.”

Before March Madness, Turner Sports saw the iPad much more as a companion device for people watching sports on television, Adamson said. iPad viewers told Turner Sports through their behavior that iPad is ready for more intense mobile sports programming that embeds video inside a data-rich environment, he added. Watch for broadcasters to begin using iPad applications as a way to show people the games they want to see alongside a rich set of social media and location-based applications in the future, said Adamson.

Adamson made his comments to Beet.TV at paidContent Mobile 2011, held May 18, 2011 in New York.