SportsNet taps Firstlight Media, Deltatre for new SN Now relaunch

Sportsnet will show off the first phase of the new SN Now this fall. (SportsNet)

SportsNet, a Canadian sports network owned by Rogers, has tapped Firstlight Media and Deltatre to rebuild its SN Now streaming experience.

SN Now—a direct-to-consumer streaming app that provides access to NHL, NBA and MLB games—will get a refreshed user interface and new features like improved stream quality and reliability, personalized content offerings, and advanced stats overlays.

André Christensen, founder and CEO of Firstlight Media, said the app will now be cloud-based, running on top of his company’s microservices architecture built on Microsoft Azure. Firstlight is providing SN Now with a new multitenant backend and platform. He said that will allow them to adapt current services and apps without needing to change the code or reupload and launch new services in weeks.

Deltatre has been charged with revamping the frontend user experience for SN Now. Alex Drosin, head of worldwide business development, said the construct his company is building for Rogers and SN Now will allow them to reuse as much technology as possible and get away from a traditional development cycle where changes happen at a slower pace.

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“Here it’s really about having this capability in this new direct-to-consumer world to be as spontaneous as possible,” he said. “You can anticipate and visualize changes in real-time. You can drop in advertising and premium sponsorship in ways that couldn’t before. It’s really about optimizing the different monetization vehicles that will occur ultimately.”

Christensen said that SN Now is already a high-performing service but that streaming technology has now evolved to the point where sports streamers no longer have to rely on a one-size-fits-all approach.

“Now it’s possible to do personalization at scale. It has not been possible so far but we are now in the fifth generation of OTT technology,” he said. “[SN Now] sees that there’s tremendous opportunity to reach a bigger audience, to engage with them in an even stronger way than we’re doing now and to monetize in different ways.”

Sportsnet will show off the first phase of the new SN Now this fall with additional development phases planned going forward.