Recently, Verizon struck a new deal with the National Football League (NFL), which would see its stranglehold on streaming games just on its network made available to customers on other networks. It's a big change, both for Verizon itself and for customers on other networks. You'll need to download a specific app, in this case one from Yahoo, but at least the option is there.
These types of deals are pretty common, but they've felt a bit archaic when there are so many streaming options out there. Each of the major sports leagues have their own means to watch their games in some capacity or another, usually connected to a monthly subscription cost, so tying it to a network could be pretty frustrating.
I pay monthly to watch NHL games, for instance, thanks to NHL.tv. It's not a perfect service by any means, but for someone who lives out of market from their favorite team, it works pretty well for the majority of games. I'm still blacklisted from some games on occasion, but that's just the nature of it and it's certainly not just an NHL issue.
The deal with the NFL and Verizon made me wonder how often folks out there are streaming games to their mobile devices while out and about. I've done it a few times, but I honestly think I could probably count those instances on one hand. It's obviously not because I don't have the option, as mentioned above, but more about the fact that when I'm out and about I don't usually find myself switching on "the game."
In those cases I'm usually playing a game, checking up on social media, or talking to folks in messaging apps. Switching on the game where it can be interrupted by notifications doesn't seem that appealing. (I could turn on Do Not Disturb, I guess.)
Verizon sees benefit of the streaming deal with the NFL, obviously, and T-Mobile has its deals in place with Major League Baseball (MLB). I remember that Verizon even had a deal with the NHL at one point. So there are obviously quite a few people out there who stream games to their smartphone or tablet while they're out and about.
I will say that my tablet gets a lot of attention when I'm trying to watch multiple games. The playoffs can usually mean that I've got one game on my TV, one game on my computer, and another on my tablet. It's pretty hectic. But I've never watched a game on my tablet outside of my house. Not yet, anyway.
What about you? How often do you watch sports on your mobile device when you're out and about? Do you check in on a full game as it's happening, or do you just watch a condensed game that's already happened? Let me know!