Olympics Show Streaming Future Is Headed Mobile

Sam Blake

Sam primarily covers entertainment and media for dot.LA. Previously he was Marjorie Deane Fellow at The Economist, where he wrote for the business and finance sections of the print edition. He has also worked at the XPRIZE Foundation, U.S. Government Accountability Office, KCRW, and MLB Advanced Media (now Disney Streaming Services). He holds an MBA from UCLA Anderson, an MPP from UCLA Luskin and a BA in History from University of Michigan. Email him at samblake@dot.LA and find him on Twitter @hisamblake

peacock

The Olympics has helped reel viewers into NBCUniversal's streaming service Peacock, at least on mobile.

From June to July, the app — heavily promoted during and leading up to the Olympics — saw average daily users in the U.S. climb 52%, to about 2.4 million. Across the same period, the app's monthly downloads increased nearly 96%, far outpacing the growth of other streaming apps, according to third-party analytics firm Apptopia.


It's a positive sign for NBCUniversal, although the true impact of the Olympics for Peacock won't be clear until once they conclude, when we're likely to see how many of the new users the Games attracted stick around.

Data from analytics firm Apptopia.

Mobile is an emerging battlefront for streaming platforms. Netflix is ramping up its foray into the small screen with its gaming initiative, which will initially focus on mobile. The company also launched a mobile app in 78 countries in the second quarter this year. The moves are part and parcel of Netflix CEO Reed Hastings' oft-repeated observation that his competitors include TikTok, YouTube and Fortnite.

To elbow their way into consumers' time spent on mobile devices, streamers have a lot of catchup to do. TikTok and Snapchat, both designed from the start for mobile use, are far ahead in terms of daily active users on mobile. And about half of the nearly $160 billion global gaming market in 2020 came from players pressing the screens on their smartphones and tablets, according to analytics firm NewZoo.

Although Peacock far outpaced its competitors in streaming as well as those in the farther reaches of entertainment in terms of mobile growth, it was still in the middle of the pack in terms of absolute monthly downloads. And it remains far behind many of its competitors in terms of total users.

Nevertheless, it's a sign that the Olympics are helping Peacock. And even though the short-lived app Quibi quickly fell from well-financed darling to dud, the prize it was seeking in capturing the mobile attention market remains as enticing as ever.

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Genies Wants To Help Creators Build ‘Avatar Ecosystems’

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

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Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

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Decerry Donato

Decerry Donato is a reporter at dot.LA. Prior to that, she was an editorial fellow at the company. Decerry received her bachelor's degree in literary journalism from the University of California, Irvine. She continues to write stories to inform the community about issues or events that take place in the L.A. area. On the weekends, she can be found hiking in the Angeles National forest or sifting through racks at your local thrift store.

LA Tech ‘Moves’: HyperDraft Taps LegalZoom Exec
Photo by James Opas | Modified by Joshua Letona

“Moves,” our roundup of job changes in L.A. tech, is presented by Interchange.LA, dot.LA's recruiting and career platform connecting Southern California's most exciting companies with top tech talent. Create a free Interchange.LA profile here—and if you're looking for ways to supercharge your recruiting efforts, find out more about Interchange.LA's white-glove recruiting service by emailing Sharmineh O’Farrill Lewis (sharmineh@dot.la). Please send job changes and personnel moves to moves@dot.la.

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