NBC beat out Fox and ESPNÂ for the exclusive broadcasting rightsÂ to the next four Olympic GamesÂ in a deal reportedly worth $4.38 Billion US. NBC’s bid cited greater depth ofÂ coverage than its competitors in addition to the higher bidding price.
NBC will have the rights to broadcast all Olympic games on television, as well as internet and mobile TV, whichÂ will lead toÂ greater potential for viewership. With the increasing growth of mobileTV and internet streaming, hopefully NBC can create a unique experience for its audience.
NBC has had exclusive rights to both the Summer and Winter Games since 2002, and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is content with the deal.Â This isn’t surprising since one of theÂ few sources of income the IOC receives isÂ from TV rights. When one broadcaster bids a rumored $2 billion more than its competitors, the decision is a no-brainer.
The only issue with NBC holding these rights is their use of tape-delay. Rather than broadcast events live, they would hold off until primetime andÂ air a condensed version, much to the dismay of many who would rather wake up at 4:30 in the morning to watch the skeleton luge and know the results live than wait untilÂ 8 pm toÂ catch the top 5 runs. NBC has quickly become one of the most technologically interactive broadcasters in the US. Hopefully they can transition that into a great and timely Olympic experience.
It is a rite of passage for bleary eyed sports fans to zombie their way through a work day afterÂ being up late watching table tennis or the ice dance free skate. Don’t take that away again, NBC.