New Delhi: Star India, the official broadcaster of the Indian Premier League (IPL), said it garnered 18.6 million concurrent viewers during the 2019 finale. The match between Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings saw the streaming giant beat its earlier record of 12.7 million concurrent users, achieved during an earlier game in the same tournament.
The network also revealed that a total of 300 million viewers had logged on to its video-streaming platform, Hotstar, to watch the 12th edition of the T20 tournament — a 74% jump in watch-time from last year.
“At Hotstar, we believe in delivering a game-changing viewing experience to our consumers through ideas that challenge the status quo. The achievements of this season once again bear witness to Hotstar being the most preferred sports destination for the country. With technology as our backbone and our all-round expertise in driving scale, we are confident we will continue to break global records and set new benchmarks with each passing year," according to Varun Narang, chief product officer, Hotstar.
Hotstar has leveraged new technology, which was able to handle almost 2.5x times more traffic, rendering better quality and viewing experience. The platform also enabled advertisers to target refined cohorts of audience. The streaming platform signed up seven digital streaming partners, including Amazon Pay, Dream 11, Swiggy, Coca-Cola, Flipkart, Maruti Suzuki and Maggi. Last year, 70 brands had advertised on Hotstar during the T20 league. Star India sold bundled contracts to advertisers, allowing them to advertise both on its TV channels as well as on Hotstar. According to estimates by media buyers, Hotstar is expected to pull ₹400 crore worth of advertising money this IPL season.
On user experience, the streaming platform will introduce a live comments feature, which will allow viewers to share their thoughts during the live match with friends. The network stated that a total of 64.4 million users engaged on the platform’s Watch ‘N Play social feature. These users answered 1.2 billion Watch ‘N Play game questions, and sent over 5.9 billion emojis and 43.5 million comments.
IPL 2019 began on 23 March and concluded on 12 May 2019. The seven-week tournament was streamed live on Hotstar in eight languages.