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Game, net, match: Aussies use tech to turn homes into sports stadiums

10 April 2017

New nbn research reveals fast broadband is unlocking a new breed of ‘tech-tators’

Sports-mad Aussies are turning their living rooms into ‘high-tech stadiums’, with new figures revealing we are watching a staggering 60 million hours of sport at home every week.

The nbn Future of Sport report, conducted by The Gemba Group, uncovers new trends into how Australians are embracing access to fast broadband to enhance their consumption of sport in the home as well as how the sport industry is evolving to meet the needs of tech-savvy fans.

Highlighting our endless appetite for sport, the report reveals more than half (59 per cent) of Australians are interested in new ‘entertainment’ formats of traditional sports with (44 per cent) believing their internet connection is helping them feel more connected to their favourite games.

It also predicts the rise of ‘tech-tators’ with more than half of Aussie sports fans (51 per cent) admitting to doing multiple things whilst watching sport such as accessing live status updates, key stats and view multiple matches at the same time.

Sports and entertainment commentator and Head of Strategy of Gemba Group, Craig Roberts, said:

“Sport fans now demand non-stop entertainment, full immersion and unfettered access to athletes, team and events. Digital technologies and increased connectivity is at the core of this revolution. More sports, deeper engagement and a heightened experience. All enabled by a rapidly developing digital eco-system that is underpinned by access to fast broadband powered by the nbn.”

“Today we see a glimpse of the sporting future – multiple camera angles, virtual reality, access to any sport in the world, and eSports. All of these innovations will be significantly enhanced by a faster broadband network. And what’s even more exciting is the innovations that are yet to come. Innovations that will enhance all aspects of the viewership experience, and all made possible by increased digital connectivity.”

Finn Bradshaw, Head of Digital at Cricket Australia said: 

“The blurring of the line between entertainment and sport will continue at pace. Every second, eight people hit play on a video on one of our platforms across the globe. Connectivity is fuelling the digital sporting trend and allowing more people access to the sports they love, no matter where they are. It’s for this reason that we continue to develop our digital offering for cricket fans.

Key findings include:

  • The new ring-side seat: Increased connectivity is a factor enabling Aussies to turn their homes into high-tech stadiums with over one-third (38 per cent) harnessing multiple devices at home, such as multi or triple screening to watch sport.
  • Top sports: Men’s and Boomer’s favourite sport is cricket (62 and 59 per cent respectively), for women and Millennials it’s tennis (50 and 44 per cent respectively).
  • Sport obsessed:  3.4 million state that they watch the equivalent of at least one working day of sport per week at home. One in three millennials (31 per cent) have gone as far as pulling an all-nighter to stream sports at home.
  • Sport fans reveal top viewing priorities: More than half of Aussies (53 per cent) rate the quality of sport coverage (including camera angles and clarity of picture) as most important for the viewing experience, followed by quality of commentary (49 per cent), statistics displayed on screen (34 per cent) and the ability to watch online in their own time (32 per cent).
  • Connected devices for sport: Australians are looking to purchase devices that will leverage fast internet and improve their in-home viewing experience with a quarter of the nation (25 per cent) looking to purchase a Smart TV, approximately a fifth (18 per cent) eyeing-up a virtual reality headset and many (14 per cent) considering a smart watch to tap into live scores and plays.
  • The rise of e-sports: Gone are the days of a few big sports dominating the consumer landscape. Today, niche sports, such as e-sports and Ninja Warrior, are exploding into show-stopping sensations with an audience of 1.5 million Australian fanatics. The audiences for these sports have developed nearly exclusively through online channels, with bespoke digital platforms delivering quality content and social connection.  

The nbn™ network is currently available to one in three Australians, is due to be half way complete by mid-year 2017, three quarters built the following year and scheduled to be complete by 2020.

Visit the nbn blog to learn more about the nbn™ Future of Sport report and how connectivity is helping transform how Australians consume sport at home. 

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