March Madness has continued to manifest itself in record numbers digitally and on mobile devices during the 2013 tournament to date.
Managed by Turner Sports, NCAA March Madness Live generated 45 million live video streams across online and mobile platforms (tablets and smartphones) through March 31, a 158% surge from the corresponding span in 2012. NCAA March Madness Live registered 18.3 million live video streams for the entire tournament last year.
All told, there has been some 12.6 million hours of live video consumption – also an all-time mark – across digital properties over the first two weeks of the tournament.
The performance of NCAA March Madness Live comes as linear viewing of the 2013 tournament has averaged 9.7 million viewers on TBS, CBS, TNT and TruTV, the event's highest in 19 years.
In partnership between the NCAA, Turner Sports and CBS Sports, NCAA March Madness Live is launched from www.ncaa.com/marchmadness, www.cbssports.com and www.bleacherreport.com, and is available via the App Store and Google Play. NCAA March Madness Live app has ranked No. 1 as the top sports app in the App Store and Google Play over the first two weeks of the tournament. It was also the No. 1 free app across all categories in the App Store during that same time period.
Last year, non-authenticated video subscribers to TBS, TNT and TruTV could pay $3.99 to watch the tourney digitally. That option was not available this time around as Turner's "TV Everywhere" universe now exceeds 80 million households. Users, though, are able to tap into a four-hour preview on NCAA March Madness Live before having to verify that they are video subscribers to the Turner trio.
A further breakdown shows that 5 million unique visitors watched live video on broadband through March 31, an increase of 139% versus 2.1 million for the entire 2012 tournament, according to Adobe Site Catalyst data. The mobile app had 3.2 million unique visitors watch live video, up 93% over 1.6 million for all of last year’s event.
Over the first two weeks of the tournament, 106 minutes of live video was consumed per user on broadband, a gain of 9% compared with the entire 2012 tournament, while 67 minutes of video was viewed per user on mobile (tablets and smartphones). The latter marked a 59% increase against the complete tournament last year.
Mobile’s share of live video consumption continued to expand over the course of the tournament, advancing from a 43% share on Thursday, March 21 – the tourney’s first full day -- to a 68% share on March 31, according to Conviva data. Mobile’s share of live viewing minutes also rose as the tournament unfolded, accounting for 23% of viewing minutes on the first day of the second round to 34% on Sunday.