Yahoo strikes deal with the NHL to stream live games

Cord CuttersStatista / nScreenMedia

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Hockey fanatics now have one more way to watch the action on the ice.

Yahoo announced a deal with the NHL on Thursday that allows the company to stream four live NHL games each week, according to Reuters. Yahoo Sports and Tumblr will provide free access to live games, highlights, and more without requiring a cable subscription or authentication.

The partnership begins immediately and will conclude at the end of the 2016-17 season.

Yahoo’s deal with the NHL creates enormous potential ad revenue opportunities because the Internet company can sell its own ad sports during the games. Yahoo will also permit brands to advertise on the stream’s website and will use its knowledge of its audience to engage with the viewer at the conclusion of the game.

This partnership is another piece of the growing desire for streaming services to broadcast live sporting events. Early this week, news broke that Facebook would bid for the streaming rights to Thursday Night Football games, according to Variety.

Yahoo also has partnerships with Major League Baseball, the PGA Tour, and German soccer club Bayern Munich. In October, Yahoo became the first major online outlet to stream an NFL game.

Digital media companies are becoming more interested in live sports because these events can attract the cord cutters of the millennial generation. That same generation is now watching highlights on their phones and tablets, a sign of the shift toward a preference for mobile video.

But that is likely just the beginning.

Margaret Boland, research analyst for BI Intelligence, Business Insider’s premium research service, has compiled a detailed report on mobile video that takes a look at how short-form mobile video has exploded. The report examines how YouTube, the historically dominant force in short-form video, was slow to implement a mobile video strategy, opening the door for new players —namely Facebook and Snapchat — to emerge.

It also takes a look at how winners will begin to emerge in distinct video content categories. YouTube, for instance, will rely heavily on its homegrown YouTube stars to distinguish its video library and drive loyalty. Facebook will become the go-to place for brands and media companies to engage with the largest audience. And Snapchat will utilize its live-events coverage and exclusive content to promote video communication among younger mobile audiences.

Mobile Video ReportBI Intelligence

Here are some key takeaways from the report:

  • The rise in mobile video viewing can be attributed to several factors: an increase in overall time spent on mobile, the convenience of on-demand viewing, a preference for digital video viewing, and the increased availability of mobile video content.
  • As video becomes mobile-first, YouTube’s hold on the short-form video industry is waning. The number of videos that are uploaded to the platform per month has remained stagnant over the past year, according to Socialbakers data shared with BI Intelligence.
  • Facebook is in the best position to upset YouTube as the go-to place for brand and media companies to upload videos and for users to watch these videos. Although Snapchat may not be competing with Facebook and YouTube on video volume, the app is changing how consumers, brands, and publishers are using mobile video for communication, news and entertainment, and live-event coverage.

In full, the report:

  • Maps out the rise of mobile video viewing and lays out the main drivers of this trend.
  • Examines why YouTube’s hold on the short-form video industry is waning as viewers migrate to mobile viewing.
  • Illustrates the dramatic increase in the number of videos that brands and media companies are publishing to Facebook over the past year.
  • Forecasts the number of videos that US brands and media companies will publish to both Facebook and YouTube in 2016.
  • Explains how Snapchat is able to compete with larger video platforms and is changing how brands, media companies, and consumers are using mobile video.

To get your copy of this invaluable guide, choose one of these options:

  1. Subscribe to an ALL-ACCESS Membership with BI Intelligence and gain immediate access to this report AND over 100 other expertly researched deep-dive reports, subscriptions to all of our daily newsletters, and much more. >> START A MEMBERSHIP
  2. Purchase the report and download it immediately from our research store. >> BUY THE REPORT

The choice is yours. But however you decide to acquire this report, you’ve given yourself a powerful advantage in your understanding of the rapidly changing world of mobile video.

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