Giancarlo Stanton #27 of the New York Yankees is greeted by teammate Aaron Judge #99 after hitting a two-run home run in the first inning during the game between the New York Yankees and the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on Thursday, July 23. 2020 in Washington, DC.
Alex Trautwig | Major League Baseball | Getty Images
The most anticipated sports game on television will not be televised this Friday.
Streamed on Apple TV+.
from Apple the streaming service has exclusive rights to the Red Sox playing the Yankees on Friday. The game gained attention not only because the Yankees are arguably in the playoffs and playing their top rival, but also because their star slugger, Aaron Judge, is coming up. American League home run record and could break it on Friday.
It’s a major test for Apple’s ambitions to become a live sports service and whether high-profile games can boost Apple’s subscriber base or serve other business goals, such as increasing the value of Apple’s products to current users. Apple’s baseball streams don’t follow a single team, instead opting for one or two games each Friday night. But while there have been high-profile games and big stars this year, this Friday the biggest star on baseball’s most valuable team will be chasing a decades-old record.
Sports broadcasts can be a powerful tool to attract users to new services. For example, when Amazon Prime aired Thursday Night Football last week, it attracted the most new Prime sign-ups during a three-hour period in the company’s history, surpassing big shopping days like Black Friday. report seen by CNBC.
This means that professional football is still a much bigger draw in the US than baseball. (That’s what Nielsen says Last week, 13 million people watched the Amazon NFL broadcast; According to ANO, 400,000 viewers is a good night for the ANO network New York Daily News. Amazon co-owns YES.)
When Apple began streaming MLB earlier this year, it said the games were free “for a limited time,” but it has yet to start charging for access to baseball games. Currently, users only need an Apple ID — an account — but don’t have to pay $5 a month for Apple TV+. Although the service is free, some users have had their say frustration about games not on their normal channel on their normal broadcasters.
Anticipation for Friday’s game is so great that the Yankees’ home channel, YES, tried unsuccessfully to wrest the broadcast back from Apple, The New York Post informed about it on Thursday.
Apple has never disclosed the number of subscribers or viewers of any of its shows or broadcasts on Apple TV+. A quality over quantity approach is used and focused on valuation as a key metric assess the success of their written programs.
Despite its historical preferences, Apple TV+ has created apps for several non-Apple platforms, including Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Google TV, and game consoles, allowing its broadcasts to reach a wider market.
In addition to baseball, Apple also has a agree with Major League Soccer to exclusively broadcast its matches. But the NFL remains the biggest sports streaming prize. As previously reported by CNBCApple has made a bid for NFL Sunday Ticket, a package of rights to unsold NFL games competing with Amazon and ESPN parent Disney.
Apple declined to comment on viewer numbers.