Usage of CBS Sports' March Madness on Demand Increases Significantly

CBS Sports contacted [itvt] last week to provide statistics on the
broadband video service it offered for the recent NCAA Division I
Men's Basketball Championship (popularly referred to as "March
Madness"). According to the company:

  • From March 20th (opening day) through April 7th (championship
    game), there were 4,759,306 total unique visitors to the NCAA March
    Madness on Demand video player, compared to 1,800,383 total unique
    visitors last year (i.e. from March 15th through April 2nd,
    2007)--meaning that the service enjoyed 164% year-over-year growth.
  • A total of 4,925,566 hours of live streaming video and audio were
    consumed on the player during the tournament, compared to 2,716,236
    hours last year--representing 81% year-over-year growth.
  • The service attracted 571,297 VIP registrants, compared to 468,720
    last year--representing 22% year-over-year growth.
  • The service's "Boss Button" (allowed viewers--many of whom were
    expected to be using it at work--to quickly hide the service) was used
    2,534,988 times.

The year-over-year comparisons are slightly skewed by the fact that
this year the player offered all 63 March Madness games, while last
year it offered only 56 games (i.e. through the regional semifinals).
Taking that into account (i.e. counting only games viewed through the
regional semifinals), the year-over-year comparisons are as follows:

  • There were 4,003,241 total unique visitors in 2008, compared to
    1,701,532 last year (an increase of 135%).
  • 4,294,400 total hours of live streaming video and audio were
    consumed in 2008, compared to 2,716,236 hours last year (an
    increase of 58%).