Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Patriots-Seahawks Super Bowl XLIX sets U.S. ratings record

By Zachary Baru

There is no doubt that the much awaited Patriots-Seahawks Super Bowl XLIX lived up to its billing, especially since preliminary figures show the telecast had the largest U.S. television audience, according to Nielsen.

Sunday's Super Bowl was viewed by 114.4 million people on NBC, topping last year's Super Bowl between Seattle and Denver which was seen by 112.2 million viewers on FOX.  As sports networks continue to compete in the growing area of digital content, NBC made this year's Super Bowl available on the NBC Sports Live Extra app.  Streaming for the coverage totaled 1.3 million users, according to NBC.

As for the rating, Sunday's Super Bowl earned a 49.7, meaning 49 percent of households with a television watched the program.  This year's rating was up 4 percent from last year's 47.6 rating. In the Boston market, the game drew a 61.0 local rating.

This year's game also earned a 72 share, as 72 percent of televisions in use were tuned to the Super Bowl on Sunday night.

In a game full of star power from both teams, and a match-up consisting of some of the very best players in the game from both sides of the field, the strong ratings were no surprise.  Time will only tell how long this record rating will last, as four of the last five Super Bowls have delivered a new viewing record.

Top Super Bowl XLIX Local Ratings:
1. 61.0 (Boston)
2. 55.7 (New Orleans)
3. 55.6 (Phoenix)
T-4. 55.0 (Detroit)
T-4. 55.0 (Norfolk)
Source: Nielsen Media Research, The Wall Street Journal, SportsBusiness Journal/SportsBusiness Daily, NBC News, Detroit Free Press

Zach Baru can be followed on Twitter @zbaru and reached at zachbaru@gmail.com.

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