Telemundo Shatters All-Time Streaming Record During Mexico’s World Cup Win

Mexico fans have helped Telemundo reach record-shattering streaming numbers during the 2018 FIFA World Cup. (Photo by Alexander Hassenstein /Getty Images)

NBCUniversal’s Telemundo Deportes, the Spanish-language rights holders of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, is shattering streaming records due in part to strong first-round showings from Mexico and Spain.

Telemundo, citing data from Adobe Analytics, said it recorded three-straight record-setting days with its World Cup coverage. The last of those record-shattering days came Sunday with Mexico’s 1-0 upset over Germany, the reigning champions.

In Mexico City, millions of people watched the coverage live from public spaces, and triggered an artificial earthquake in Mexico City following the historic win (Mexico’s first win over Germany in World Cup play) and ensuing celebrations. On Telemundo, the game ranks as the most live-streamed event in the broadcaster’s history with 1.1 million livestream uniques, breaking a prior record set on Friday during the Spain-Portugal game that ended in a 3-3 tie and attracted 963,000 livestream uniques.

Telemundo streamed three matches on Sunday, which represented its best-ever day on digital platforms with a total of 2.3 million uniques that generated 6.7 million livestreams. On Saturday, Telemundo said it had 1.8 million uniques, generating 5.9 million livestreams.

The first four full days of match coverage on Telemundo delivered 4.4 million uniques in total, generating 21.4 million livestreams, with the average viewer spending 32 minutes per match watching games.

This is Telemundo’s first-ever presentation of the World Cup. The broadcaster delivered 266 million livestream minutes during the first four days of the month-long tournament, with fans tuning in via TelemundoDeportes.com, and the Telemundo En Vivo and NBC Sports apps.

“After only four days of competition, Telemundo Deportes’ World Cup coverage continues to hit milestones and is well on its way to becoming the most live-streamed Spanish-language event in U.S. history,” the broadcaster said in a statement.

SportTechie Takeaway  

The 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia is expected to be an overall record-shattering event for streaming, and could potentially put streaming on track to surpass linear TV for the first time.

As broadcasters around the world cater to soccer fans who have cut the cable cord, the Interactive Advertising Bureau forecasts that 65 percent of consumers who have live streamed video previously will stream matches this World Cup, compared with 71 percent who IAB suspects will watch via linear TV.

In 2014, a record-breaking (at the time) 5.3 million unique viewers watched matches online in the United States. This year’s tournament has already surpassed that, partially because more people have cut the cable cord and fans have access to many more streaming options. 

If teams from Spanish-language countries, such as Mexico and Spain, continue to do well, chances are high that Telemundo will further benefit and potentially reach new records during the tournament.