BRISTOL, Conn.—In another sign that sports are recovering from the pandemic blues of 2020, ESPN Digital is reporting that it reached 99.4 million users in June 2021, up 24% from a year earlier. That added up to its best results ever for June and the first half of a year, the company said.
The digital operations also saw a 132% increase in minutes from a year earlier when the pandemic severely limited live sports. The MLB regular season, NBA playoffs, Cricket, Euro 2020 and the Mayweather v. Paul fight, where the key drivers of the increased traffic, the company said.
ESPN Digital is averaging 98.5 million users per month in 2021, making this the best first half year on record. June marks the 40th straight month that ESPN ranked number one in the U.S. digital sports category for monthly unique visitors, ESPN reported.
The ESPN App saw 21 million users in June, more than two-and-a-half times the size of the next closest competitor. This marks the best June on record for the ESPN App. The ESPN App total minutes were also up 261% year-over-year.
ESPN Social had a total of 361 million social actions generated across ESPN social accounts in June according to Shareablee.
Across ESPN’s digital shows, Hoop Streams averaged 1.4M views per episode during the NBA Finals (8.4M viewers total), up 10% from last year’s Finals, while watch time more than doubled. Hoop Streams averaged 1.1M views per episode over the Western Conference Finals (+25% vs the 2020 ECF).
George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.
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