Super Bowl fans streaming the big game were subject to lag that averaged around 44 seconds across several platforms, according to livestreaming tech firm Phenix.
Phenix measured streaming delays compared to over the air, cable and satellite signals. According to the company’s data, YouTube TV did the best with 42.2 seconds of delay compared to the on-field game, followed by CBS Sports with 43 seconds, Yahoo Sports with 43.1 seconds, fuboTV with 44.8 seconds, NFL with 44.9 seconds and Hulu + Live TV with 46.2 seconds.
The company noted that fans streaming the game on-site through Verizon 5G SuperStadium experienced only one second of delay.
Phenix also measured the drift between different devices watching livestreams on the same apps and found devices had delays ranging from 51.1 seconds to 61.4 seconds.
“This year, it was more crucial than ever for streaming platforms to deliver the Super Bowl LV live stream in real-time to millions of viewers across devices and platforms. Yet, most platforms showed little to no improvement over past years,” said Phenix CEO Roy Reichbach. “Our latency testing found that some viewers were almost a full minute behind the action happening on the field – meaning they likely found out about a big play from a push-notification or tweet, before they were able to see it on their screen. Significant latency is not only detrimental to the fan experience, but it’s also a major hit to the bottom line of broadcasters, advertisers and betting companies that rely on the Super Bowl to draw in a big number of viewers each year.”
According to Phenix, streaming video delays for the 2020 Super Bowl ranged from 44 seconds to 55 seconds.
Phenix said it collected 285 data points across seven streaming sources on multiple devices and that it benchmarked latency of OTA, cable and satellite against the Verizon 5G SuperStadium in-stadium experience.