Winter Olympics ‘smash’ stream records with 22.2m viewing Pyeongchang 2018 games on BBC platforms

COVERAGE of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympic games has hit an all time high, smashing last year’s viewership record by over 15 million.

The BBC has revealed that this year’s coverage was streamed 22.2 million times across BBC Sport and BBC iPlayer, smashing the 6.2 million streams of the 2014 games in Sochi.

BBC TV coverage attracted an overall audience of 33.2m with a peak of 4.1m on February 17 for Yarnold & Deas’s success in the Skeleton.

Neil Hall, head of product at BBC Sport, said: “We want to make sure audiences can watch all the action from major events however they want.

“We gave people unprecedented choice this year across BBC Sport and BBC iPlayer – whether it’s watching our world-class live coverage, highlights packages, clips or following the latest news and analysis.

“Audiences have really embraced that with this year’s coverage being streamed over three times more than the previous Winter Olympics.”


In total 17.7m unique browsers followed the BBC’s digital coverage across computer (30%), tablet (18%), mobile (47%) and connected TV (5%) in the UK alone – with an average 2.9m unique browsers watching every day.

Last week also saw BBC Sport’s biggest week since the Rio Olympics with 23.3m unique UK browsers visiting the site.

The most popular day was February 17, with 1.9m streams, where Yarnold & Deas achieved a gold and bronze medal, followed by February 18 (1.6m) when Great Britain took on Italy in the Men’s Curling and Sweden in the Women’s Curling, and February 13 (1.5m) with the Snowboard Halfpipe and the Mixed Doubles Curling Final.

BBC Sport also offered a range of video clips in addition to the BBC’s overall programme coverage, bringing the total number of Winter Olympics video views to 39.1m. The top 10 most-watched moments from BBC Sport clips were:

  • ‘Peach of a shot’ sends GB into semis – 378,496 views
  • Elise Christie suffers disqualification – 376,048 views
  • Christie crashes out in short-track 500m final – 347,328 views
  • I was knocked over, I didn’t fall on my own – Christie – 334,800 views
  • Christie crashes out in 1500m semi-final – 327,120 views
  • Canadian duo win ice dancing with record score – 305,424 views
  • Yarnold defends her Olympic skeleton title – 296,544 views
  • 17-year-old Red Gerard takes gold – best of day 2 – 275,872 views
  • Competitors hit the wall in men’s luge 267,312 views
  • Wardrobe malfunction for South Korean skater – 253,024 views

Over 3m users were signed-in on mobile and tablet, where they could set up medal notifications and get the latest Games news in the My Sport section.

Over 400k browsers visited My Sport during the Games.

Across social media, BBC Sport connected with young audiences on social media through collaborations with Snapchat and Instagram, which saw millions of users access daily stories and native video, as well as posts back to the BBC across Facebook and Twitter.

BBC Sport accounts had more than 50m video views in the UK on social media during the Winter Olympics, with these accounts engaging with over 10m users between February 9 to February 25, 70% of whom were under 34.

Harry is editor of The Entertainment Gazette, working on Showbiz and Entertainment news in the UK - got a story? +44 7494615641 for tip-offs.

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