Friday, March 21st, 2014

With NRL this year following in AFL’s booted footsteps to broadcast matches live to subscribers on mobile phones and tablets, Roy Morgan Research looks at which footy fans are so far using AFL Live Official App.    

Over six million Australians aged 14+ say they almost always or occasionally watch AFL on TV during the regular season, and 332,000 (5.5%) of these viewers also used the AFL Live Official App in an average four weeks during the Premiership season of March to September last year.

‘Live Pass’ subscriptions via the AFL’s app—now also available for the NRL—allow users the ability to stream live matches, watch replays on-demand and access behind-the-scenes or exclusive content on their mobile phone or tablet.

6.7% of male and 3.9% of female viewers used the match-streaming AFL app during the season. 8.7% of 14-24 year-old viewers used the app, followed by 8.0% of viewers 25-34 and 6.8% of those 35-49.

% of AFL Regular Season viewers who used AFL Live App in an average month from March to September 2013:


Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), March – September 2013, n = 3793 Australians 14+ who almost always or occasionally watch AFL on TV during the Regular Season.

The gender of those watching regular season AFL on TV is fairly evenly split between men (57%) and women (43%). However, it is clear men still comprise a higher proportion of die-hard footy viewers, being 69% of app users to the 31% who are women. 

People aged 14-24 and 25-34 comprise 14% and 15% respectively of AFL Regular Season viewers but together made up nearly half (45%) of AFL Live App users during an average four week period. However, it wasn’t just Gen Y who was drawn to the streaming App: 35-49 year-olds are 27% of the AFL TV viewing audience but 33% of App users.

45% of TV viewers are over 50, but with just 2.8% of this group using the AFL Live App during the 2013 season, they comprised just 22% of Live App users.

Gender and Age of AFL Regular Season TV Viewers vs AFL Live App Users during Regular Season:

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), March – September 2013, n = 3793 Australians 14+ who almost always or occasionally watch AFL on TV during the Regular Season and n= 178 Australians who used the AFL Live Official App in the last four weeks.

Tim Martin, General Manager – Media, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“The availability of live streaming sports matches on mobile phones and tablets will change how and where games are viewed. However for now, it is a niche product catering mostly to die-hard, younger and male, fans who want access to more (and more flexible) content than can be broadcast through commercial or Pay TV. It is not increasing overall viewership, nor yet decreasing viewership via traditional channels. 

“NRL regular season TV viewers are typically more likely to be male and skew younger than AFL viewers. As these groups are also the ones more likely to take up live sports streaming on mobile devices, we could expect the new NRL app will soon attract a higher proportion of its TV viewers than the 4.1% of AFL viewers who used the AFL app in an average month last year.    

“In many ways, spectacle sports are a natural fit for mobile viewing, and we could expect apps like those for AFL and NRL to drive interest in video streaming as a whole, as has happened already in the US. However, watching sports is often such a communal activity, it’s hard to imagine a time when Australian footy fans will be sitting alone in a room with a mobile or tablet on grand final day.”

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Roy Morgan Research

Roy Morgan Research is Australia’s best known and longest established market research and public opinion survey company. Roy Morgan Single Source is thorough, accurate, and provides comprehensive, directly applicable information about current and future customers. It is unique in that it directs all the questions to each individual from a base survey sample of around 55,000 interviews in Australia and 15,000 interviews in New Zealand annually - the largest Single Source databases in the world. The questions asked relate to lifestyle and attitudes, media consumption habits (including TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, cinema, catalogues, pay TV and the Internet), brand and product usage, purchase intentions, retail visitations, service provider preferences, financial information and recreation and leisure activities. This lead product is supported by a nationally networked, consultancy-orientated market research capability.
Shaun Ellis
P: 03 9224 5332


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