The 2016 games smashed online streaming records. On Monday 8th August, during the third day of Rio, Akamai had already exceeded the total amount of video streaming data that it delivered for all 17 days of London in 2012. It's already been an incredible summer of sport online, with the Super Bowl and European football competition. Whilst the European football broke all sorts of sports streaming records including audience figures and a new traffic peak of 7.26 terabits per second (Tbps) on the Akamai network, the former was streamed live in the US by CBS to 3.96 million unique viewers, who watched for an average of 101 minutes each, according to official figures. Collectively, this is all the evidence needed to show how our video consumption habits are changing.
Super Bowl Success!
The reason the Super Bowl attracted such high viewing figures for a single sports event was because it's easier than ever for the game to be streamed onto larger TV screens, taking it directly into viewers' living rooms. Streaming device sales have grown significantly in the last 12 months complementing the already high percentage of smart TV's in the market. This means TV's are now connected and capable of receiving high quality video streams over the internet. In 2016, Akamai delivered a major global sporting event live in 4k, online, providing an online streaming experience that surpassed what most fans can receive through linear TV technology.
Whilst we look forward with a great deal of optimism, the idiosyncrasies of streaming high quality live video at scale continue to be a challenge. Viewers have no tolerance for interruptions or poor quality video streaming, meaning brands who want to build an audience, must ensure that video starts and plays without fail with no buffering.
At Akamai our efforts are focused on developing client based technology to provide new capabilities such as Ingest Acceleration & Media Acceleration, predictive prepositioning of content on devices, multicast technology for delivery to big audiences and peer-assisted delivery to supplement video streaming performance. We also announced the launch of our new Broadcast Operations Control Centre that provides customers with a complete view of their live workflow and user experiences.