Majority of Younger Viewers Plan on Watching World Cup Online

World Cup 2022
(Image credit: FIFA)

With the 2022 FIFA World Cup coming up next month, fans are making their views known on how they plan on watching the world’s largest televised sporting event.

According to a recent survey conducted by Dynata and commissioned by Amdocs of sports fans who plan on watching the month-long event, most (68%) viewers plan to watch the World Cup on live TV. However that number goes down with younger viewers—57% of millennials and 39% of Gen-X plan to stream games and notably, viewers under 40 plan to watch the games on social media channels, with Gen-Z leading this trend (34%) followed by millennials. (32%).

While 82% of fans are confident in their home connectivity to support their World Cup viewing, confidence drops to 60% when it comes to their mobile network. Accessibility is also a concern, with 25% of total respondents stating they don’t have access to all games from their provider

When asked if they would be willing to pay for an unlimited World Cup mobile data package to stream matches at 5G speeds with no delays or loss of connectivity, 48% were interested. As 5G continues to grow, expect to see more service providers having unique "experience packages" beyond a simple blanket of 5G speeds for all offerings—for instance, a connection specifically for special events like the World Cup.

Watchers have a growing desire for more interactive experiences like 360-degree live video of the game (27%), interactive in-game challenges (25%) and AR/VR experiences (25%). Two-thirds (64%) of viewers expressed interest in using the metaverse to be part of a virtual stadium where they could watch sporting events with other fans as if they were there. Gen-Z (44%) and millennials (40%) are the most interested, while a third (35%) of Gen-X respondents were.

“As 5G continues to grow, we expect to see more service providers having unique "experience packages" beyond a simple blanket of 5G speeds for all offerings—for instance, a connection specifically entertainment experiences, the metaverse and more. As experiences become more a la carte, there is a need for a new kind of approach that can be fine-tuned and uniquely tailored to end-users. This will be essential to be a player in a new digital world, including next-generation entertainment experiences made possible by a reliable network.”

The 2022 FIFA World Cup takes place in Qatar, Nov. 20-Dec. 18.

Tom has covered the broadcast technology market for the past 25 years, including three years handling member communications for the National Association of Broadcasters followed by a year as editor of Video Technology News and DTV Business executive newsletters for Phillips Publishing. In 1999 he launched digitalbroadcasting.com for internet B2B portal Verticalnet. He is also a charter member of the CTA's Academy of Digital TV Pioneers. Since 2001, he has been editor-in-chief of TV Tech (www.tvtech.com), the leading source of news and information on broadcast and related media technology and is a frequent contributor and moderator to the brand’s Tech Leadership events.