Streaming Sports is So Ripe for Disruption That it Hurts
I am a Green Bay Packers fan, but I live in Illinois, so there’s no way for me to watch all of their games on TV throughout the year. Fair enough, but then how do I watch all their games?
Well, the best option as far as I can tell is to subscribe to NFL Sunday Ticket, which lets you watch most out-of-market games throughout the regular season. Sunday Ticket costs around $300 for the year, but make sure you pony up for the $400 one or you will only be able to watch on your phone 🤦🏻♂️
Now I mentioned that I get most games in Sunday Ticket, and I ran into that blocker this weekend when the Packers game was on Fox, but Xfinity was borked, so I could get seemingly every other channel, but Fox was basically static and a message from Xfinity to the effect of, “we can’t seem to carry this channel now, sorry.”
So I went to the Sunday Ticket app, but it also won’t let me watch it because it’s playing in my local market, so I get a big old “BLACKED OUT” banner over that game.
Then I hear a rumor that there is a Fox Sports app for the Apple TV I can get, sign in via my cable provider, and watch the in-market game from there…sometimes…maybe this week, and maybe the game you actually want to see.
The Fox Sports app did have the game I wanted to watch, and it was a good experience from there, but this really is crazy.
- Pay a cable provider to watch some games (or antenna if that works in your area)
- Pay NFL Sunday Ticket’s extreme price tag to get most, but not all games
- Gamble that some games will stream on the network’s sports app sometimes
This is all just really complicated and inconsistent, and reliant on luck in some cases. I know there are interest groups who don’t want this to change, but it’s crazy to me that I still can’t just pay $X per year and watch every game from any specific team I want. Seriously, if next season there was a deal where I could pay $200 and get to stream all 16 Packers games in the same place every week and with no blackout restrictions, I’d buy it in a heartbeat.