eSports Spectatorship Ratings
Gaming video content includes live streams as well as recorded gameplay, reviews and anything that engages the gaming community. Its growth is driven in part by the increasing mainstream acceptance of video games and the development of easy-to-use platforms for both consumers and content creators. eSports tournament viewership is already surpassing that of some major offline sports. For example, 43 million people watched the final “League of Legends” World Championship match in 2016, while only 31 million viewers watched the final game of the 2016 NBA Finals. The on-demand nature of streaming platforms such as Twitch and YouTube Gaming are the key drivers of eSports growth. Live streaming helped enable major tournaments to reach the general public, and significantly extended reach beyond live, in-person events. In 2016, more than 292 billion minutes, or roughly 556,000 years worth of Twitch content, were viewed by 2.2 million unique viewers. As an audience, eSports viewers are highly engaged, and the total audience is expected to grow to 345 million by 2019, according to Newzoo.