It’s no secret that streaming is getting more popular, and the Super Bowl is no exception. CBS says that of the viewers tuning in to watch the Denver Broncos take on and eventually defeat the Carolina Panthers, a “record audience” watched via streaming, according to Re/code.
At least for now, the company isn’t publicly sharing any hard numbers in terms of viewership. Last year, NBC streamed the game and said streaming viewership had hit 1.3 million concurrent users, with an average of 800,000 viewers per minute. CBS says it saw higher numbers — we just don’t know how much higher they were.
This shouldn’t come as a surprise, really. If you read our guide on how to watch Super Bowl 50, you know there were plenty ways to watch that didn’t involve traditional broadcast or cable TV. CBS streamed the game live on CBSSports.com, but it was also available via the CBS Sports app, which is available on most streaming boxes, the Xbox One, iOS and Android tablets, and Windows 10.
When it comes to streaming NFL games live over the Internet, this is just the beginning. Last week we reported that several major tech companies including Apple, Google, Amazon, and Verizon were said to be in talks with the NFL over rights to streaming future games. While networks may be reluctant to move toward streaming, the NFL certainly seems to see major potential in it.
Viewers may have watched via streaming in record numbers, but it wasn’t an entirely smooth experience. Early on, some Apple TV owners encountered issues with the CBS Sports app. This was fixed fairly quickly, and fans were able to watch most of the game, but this isn’t the first time streaming services have been challenged by major TV events.
Most viewers watch for the game, but plenty of people care just as much about the commercials that air during the game. If you missed them or just want to see a few again, take a look at our roundup of the best ads from this year’s game.