DALLAS—Annual sports OTT subscription revenue in the United States was $13.1 billion in 2022 and will almost double to approximately $22.6 billion in 2027, a 73% increase over the next five years.
That was the conclusion of Park’s Associates “OTT & Sports: Services and Strategies for Growth,” report, which examines key trends in sports content and provides an overview of the pay-TV sports media landscape, OTT sports services, direct-to-consumer trends, and the sports fan viewing experience.
The report notes traditional pay TV is losing its stronghold on sports media rights. Streaming providers, in search of original and exclusive content, are looking to live sports to attract and maintain their user bases. For example, Amazon now has the NFL's Thursday Night Football on Prime Video, and Apple recently announced a 10-year deal with Major League Soccer (MLS).
According to Parks, the $13.1 billion does not include any sports-specific services offered for free or included in the service such as Amazon Prime or Apple TV. "The 2022 subscription revenue number only includes those services that are dedicated OTT sports services or are sports add-on tiers/packages,“ said Eric Sorensen, Sr. Contributing Analyst for Parks Associates.
Sport media rights holders want to get games in front of as many eyes as possible, according to Jennifer Kent, VP, Research, Parks Associates.
"The audience reach of online-only and streaming services is enormous. To compete with the digital titans, media conglomerates with conventional and online services are shifting finances and resources to launch, improve, and develop streaming services targeted at sports fans."
The report notes that as sports fans move online and away from traditional pay TV, this drives yet another sector of the pay-TV demographic to cut the cord. According to the research, there are more than 50 specific sports OTT services in the US, creating market fragmentation and competition to attract sports fans.
"There has always been intense competition for sports-related content, but the disaggregation of content delivery with the growth of streaming services is pouring fuel on the fire," Kent said.
This article has been updated.
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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.
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