Announced on the official NFL Communications blog this week, the professional football organization will once again make the Super Bowl available to stream online during the game on February 3, 2013. In addition to the Super Bowl broadcast, NFL officials also plan on streaming the Pro Bowl as well as two wild card games on the Web and mobile devices on the Verizon network. According to the release, football fans will be able to access a stream of the Super Bowl on CBSSports.com as well as NFL.com. The other three games will be streamed on NFL.com as well as NBCSports.com.
Earlier this year, over two million people watched Super Bowl XLVI through streaming video rather than the network broadcast on NBC. While the stream of the Super Bowl significantly cut into the percentage of downstream broadband traffic being used for video services like Netflix and Hulu Plus, the number of people that streamed the Super Bowl over the Web or on Verizon’s mobile service accounted for less then two percent of the total audience that watched the nationally televised game.
In order to access the stream of any of the four games on a Verizon device, the subscriber must download the NFL Mobile application to their iOS or Android device. While the NFL Mobile application is free to download, the NFL charges consumers $5 each month to access video content such as live streaming games. In addition, data charges will apply to Verizon subscribers that are watching a game over a LTE connection. Airplay mirroring isn’t available for the application due to rights restrictions.
According to the NFL, watching the stream of the Super Bowl on the Web will offer football fans more camera angles for key plays and extra statistics that are updated constantly during the game. Similar to the feed earlier this year, it’s unlikely that the streaming feed will include the same commercials seen on CBS. However, fans can simply use the streaming version as a second screen on a nearby laptop in the living room in order to have access to the extra features.