Other than the Super Bowl, March Madness is my favorite sports event of the year. I am a graduate of Michigan State University (Go Spartans!) ,a Virginian (Go Cavaliers and the ACC!) and a longtime fan of UNC (Go Tar Heels!). Yet, no matter how much I’d like to follow all these teams, doing so has always been difficult due to work and the way television favors showing games to regional markets. However, this year is different.
The NCAA has collaborated with CBS and Turner Sports to provide unlimited live streaming over the Web, smartphones and tablets. This is a solid acknowledgement of the need to support mobility and its potential to draw huge new audiences for daytime viewing (which includes me). If you are a pay TV subscriber, you need to download the app (App Store, Google Play and Windows Store), log in and provide your pay TV service information. You will then be able to stream the games live on TBS, TNT and truTV. Incredibly, games broadcast by CBS will not require registration to view in this manner (this is truly March Madness).
A recent study of TV viewing in the U.K. showed that, for the first time, people viewed online content more than they watched television. And in the U.S., with smartphone penetration topping 70 percent and tablet users exceeding 30 percent, there is a large and growing market for live streaming, such as this programming from the NCAA and other sports that attract large followings.
For those of you who have IT departments that may block your access, this may be the one time of year to request a pass (I would). Of course, conducting business must be the priority, but if the capacity is there, then the next week or so would be a good time to open up access.
David Byrd is chief marketing officer at ANPI and leads marketing programs for SMBs, enterprises and carriers. Prior to joining the company, Byrd was chief marketing officer and executive vice president of sales at Broadvox where he built a nationally recognized channel partner program and award-winning SIP product offering.