IPL 2020: All-time record 269 million TV viewers watched matches in first week
A total of 269 million viewers, an all-time record in the IPL history watched the matches in the opening week of the 13th IPL, according to a Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India-Nielsen report. 11 million more viewers watched each match compared to the 2019 IPL.
Seven matches were played in the opening week, from September 19-25, and they witnessed a 15 per cent growth in viewing minutes as compared to 2019, according to the report titled 'Television Viewership and Advertising Consumption of IPL-13 2020'.
These numbers are based on live telecast on TV only, and do not include mobile viewers. The matches from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) were telecast on 21 channels of the STAR India family. In IPL 2019, the matches were beamed on 24 channels.
The opening week of IPL 2020 witnessed a 21 per cent growth in average impressions per match as compared to the 2019 edition, despite holding one match less and fewer channels. The tournament, in the first week, registered 60.6 billion viewing minutes across seven matches.
As per the report, the tournament opener between defending champions Mumbai Indians and three-time winners Chennai Super Kings on September 19 attracted a viewership of 52 million impressions -- 29 per cent higher than last year and was watched by 158 million viewers, which is 21 per cent higher than 2019.
According to the report, second to seventh match garnered more than 34 million impressions and were watched by over 100 million viewers match on match, the highest being the one between CSK and MI, which was watched by 158 million people. The report also said that one out of every three television viewers watched IPL matches live in the opening week, with a cumulative reach of 60.6 billion viewing minutes.
The advertising volume also saw a spike during the opening week. As per the data, the total advertising volume for the opening week was 15 per cent higher than the opening week last season. The growth was witnessed in advertising volumes across matches, except match No. 7, which saw a decline of two per cent as compared to last year's seventh IPL match.
OTT platforms during the opening week of this season witnessed a 32 per cent increase in user base over the previous week, primarily driven by the massive gains seen in Disney+Hotstar. Smartphone usage also witnessed a sharp increase during the opening week of IPL 2020 -- up by eight per cent as compared to recent weeks whereas video streaming spiked by 13 per cent.
Massive gains were seen in the audience base for Hotstar, Sports Apps, and Fantasy Sports, stated the report. BARC India is a joint industry company founded by stakeholder bodies that represent broadcasters, advertisers, and advertising and media agencies.
Nielsen is a leading global information and measurement company that provides market research, insights and data about what people watch, listen to and buy.