The World Cup still has ten days still to run, and it has already exceeded the 2014 Rio tournament regarding data delivered and peak viewers. Even in the US, where the national team failed to qualify, it is still setting streaming records.
England vs. Colombia hits a peak
Understandably, the England versus Colombia game on Wednesday, July 3rd attracted an enormous television audience in the UK. 24 million viewers tuned into the game on Britain’s biggest commercial broadcaster, ITV. Online viewing boosted the total number of viewers by 14%. 3.3 million people streamed the game online through ITV Hub.
The game was not just a hit in England and Colombia. Akamai says it saw the highest video traffic peak of the tournament so far during the game. The 18.59 Tbps peak is not just a record for the World Cup. It is the highest video traffic peak for any single sporting competition that Akamai has helped deliver.
The match between Portugal and Spain during group play provided the previous peak for the 2018 World Cup. The game drove a peak of 15.8 Tbps. The previous peak for the 2014 Rio World Cup was 6.9 Tbps.
Mexico drives US ratings and streaming records
Fox, which is delivering the World Cup in the US, is also seeing record viewership, even though the home team didn’t qualify. The Brazil versus Mexico game, on Monday, July 2nd, garnered a peak television audience of 5.4 million. It was also the top authenticated streaming event for the channel, with 1.4 million unique visitors. Monday was also its best day, with 2 million viewers. The previous record was also set during the World Cup, on June 27th, with a high of 1.8 million.
Telemundo also saw a record peak audience for the Mexico-Brazil game. Across Telemundo, TelemundoDeportes.com, Telemundo En Vivo and NBC Sports apps, the total audience was 5.5 million viewers. That’s a weekday daytime rating record for Telemundo Deportes.
Even minor games drawing record streamers
According to Akamai, three-quarters of all the matches played in the first round of the World Cup 2018 exceeded the peak bandwidth for the whole of the 2014 Rio tournament.
Take Denmark for example. The team has driven the lowest volume for its games, averaging 7.8 Tbps. However, the previous peak game at the Rio tournament was 7 Tbps.
Akamai reported the following data to emphasize just how popular the Russia World Cup is:
- After ten days, Akamai had delivered more data than it did for the whole of the 2014 Rio World Cup
- After three days, Akamai had delivered more data than it did for the whole of the 2012 Summer Olympics.