Olympics Ratings Roundup: NBC Continues To Rake in Monumental Audiences Across All Platforms
The London Games have proved to be even more of a ratings and streaming juggernaut than expected for NBC, besting even the most idealistic projections through the first 10 days in London. Through Sunday, the London Olympics have averaged 33.6 million viewers in primetime and a household rating of 18.8/32, making it the most-watched and highest-rated non-U.S. Summer Olympics since the Montreal Olympics in 1976.
The 10-day average primetime viewership of 33.6 million viewers is 3.7 million more viewers than the first 10 nights from Beijing (29.9 million) and 7.4 million more than the first 10 nights from Athens (26.2 million). The 10-night average household rating of 18.8/32 is 9% higher than the first 10 nights from Beijing (17.3/30) and 19% higher than the first 10 nights from Athens (15.8/28), the last European Summer Olympics.
Sunday Viewership Soars
Sunday’s primetime coverage of the London Olympics on NBC drew an average of 31.3 million viewers, the ninth time in 10 nights that the average viewership for the London Olympics surpassed the Beijing Olympics. This marks the seventh night with at least 30 million viewers, equaling the combined total of the 2008 Beijing Olympics (five nights) and the 2004 Athens Olympics (two nights). Sunday’s primetime coverage on NBC (7:30-11:29 p.m. ET/PT) earned a 17.5/29 national rating/share, 9% higher than the comparable night from Beijing (16.0/27), and 11% higher than the comparable night from Athens (15.8/28), the latest European Olympics.
NBC’s live daytime coverage of Andy Murray’s defeating Roger Federer to win an Olympic gold medal on Centre Court at Wimbledon drew 8.2 million viewers and had a household rating of 5.5/17.
Resonating With Teens, Teen Girls
Perhaps most important, the Games are drawing big numbers among the next generation of Olympic viewers. Through the first week of coverage, overall viewership was up double digits among teens and teenage girls. Overall viewership for girls 12-17 was up 54% vs. Beijing (8.3 rating vs. 5.4 rating), and overall viewership for teens 12-17 was up 29% vs. Beijing (7.2 rating vs. 5.6 rating). Teen viewership of the London Games is more than six times higher than traditional broadcast-viewing habits, and teen-girl ratings for NBC’s coverage of the London Olympics is 89% higher than the No. 1-rated primetime show on broadcast television in the same demographic (Glee/Fox). And one more fun fact: More than three times as many female teens watched the London Olympics in primetime than purchased a movie ticket to The Twilight Saga: Eclipse.
Young people are also flocking to smartphones and tablets for NBC Olympics digital content. According to NBC Live Extra App data, 68% of people ages 13-24 are live-streaming for the first time on a tablet (among NBC Live Extra App users). 53% of people ages 13-24 are live streaming for the first time on a smartphone (among NBC Live Extra App users).
Olympic Viewing in the Digital Age
It’s not just the kids that are watching on mobile devices, however, as NBCOlympics.com has surpassed 1 billion page views across its computer, mobile, and tablet platforms (including the two NBC Olympics apps, NBC Olympics Live Extra and NBC Olympics) and has seen remarkable streaming increases over Beijing.
Overall, 7.6 million devices having been verified by cable, satellite, and telco customers. According to NBC, this is believed to be the most device verifications ever for a single event in TV Everywhere history.
Total video streams are now over 100 million (102.6 million), surpassing the entire 2008 Beijing Olympics (75.5 million total streams) and up 147% over Beijing (41.6 million) through the same period. A total of 13.2 million hours of video have been streamed, surpassing the entire 2008 Beijing Olympics (9.9 million total streams) and up 121% over Beijing (5.9 million) through the same period.
Live video streams are at 45 million, more than triple the total live streams for the entire Beijing Olympics (14 million) and up 355% over Beijing through the same period (10.0 million streams). 8.7 million hours of live video has been streamed, more than double the total hours for the entire Beijing Olympics (4 million) and up 365% more than Beijing (1.9 million hours) through the same period.
As of Sunday, the London Olympics page-view total was at 1.1 billion, nearly surpassing the total page views for the entire 2008 Beijing Olympics (1.2 billion). Visitors are spending more than 27 minutes per visit in the site (118% ahead of Beijing). Through the same point in the Games, London page views are outpacing Beijing (811 million) by 38%
NBC Olympics Live Extra and NBC Olympics apps have been downloaded more than 7 million times, peaking at No. 1 and No. 2 as the Top Free Apps for iPhone and iPad on App Store.
The most watched live streams in Olympics history — all of which have occurred during the London Games — are as follows:
- July 31, 2012: Team USA Women’s Gymnastics wins Gold — 1,462,834
- August 5, 2012: Usain Bolt wins Men’s 100m — 1,288,941
- August 2, 2012:Michael Phelps wins 200IM Gold — 1,192,812
- August 2, 2012: Gabby Douglas wins Women’s All-Around Gold — 1,096,319
- July 30, 2012: Men’s Gymnastics Team Gold Medal Final — 1,067,679
- July 31, 2012: Team USA Men’s Swimming wins 4×200 Gold — 1,010,416
- July 28, 2012: Ryan Lochte wins 400IM Gold — 891,819