When the first googlie skips by a batsman Friday, cricket fans all over the world will be able to watch it live on YouTube's dedicated Indian Premier League channel. Forty-three days and 60 games later, YouTube will have the final play live as well.
Google's making every minute of every game available live (except in India where there's a five-minute delay, and in the U.S. where "live" would mean a sleeping audience-the games will generally have a two-hour delay) via webcast across the world. The IPL version of cricket is one of the world's most popular games, and Google's worldwide rights mean they'll have access to legions of the sport's fans.
NBC was roundly criticized for its online video coverage of the Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Despite having the rights to broadcast every Olympic event live, the network decided to stream only 400 hours of hockey and curling.
Google has managed to put together a healthy dose of advertising to support the IPL effort as well, with eight major advertisers and a number of other advertisers buying time is specific markets like Great Britain, Australia and Southeast Asia. Google says the IPL has some 2 billion fans worldwide.
Following opening ceremonies Friday, the Deccan Chargers will play their first match against the Kolkata Knight Riders.
ESPN and the ‘live' Olympics in 2014
NBC and its pitiful streaming Olympic coverage