But overall streaming scores fall short of World Cup semifinal/finals 88 peak
Waterloo, ON, Canada, February 13, 2023 – Viewers using the FOX Sports App were the big winners Sunday, according to SSIMWAVE®, an IMAX company that used its Emmy Award-winning technology to measure video quality of more than a half-dozen broadcast and OTT streams of The Big Game.
SSIMWAVE’s patented technology that replicates the human visual system scored the FOX Sports App’s video quality as 83 – or excellent – on a 0-100 scale, superior to any other measured broadcast or OTT stream. The FOX Sports App also had the lowest latency of any of the streaming services evaluated by SSIMWAVE.
SSIMWAVE conducted the evaluation as part of a broader benchmarking effort that is designed to help the sports leagues, broadcasters and streamers deliver the best possible video experience for fans. Services measured included cable delivery of the FOX (United States) and CTV (Canada) broadcasts, as well as five streaming services: FOX Sports App; YouTube TV; HULU+Live TV; DirecTV; and DAZN.
Key findings from Sunday’s Big Game included:
- While two streaming providers scored higher than 80 on Sunday, no broadcast or streaming quality could match the 4K scores in last year’s World Cup semifinals or finals, which reached as high as 88.
- Of the five streaming services measured, four suffered from latency that was 20-40 seconds behind the fastest streaming service.
- A United States cable operator’s feed of the FOX Sports broadcast recorded the lowest score of all broadcast and streaming services measured, a 73.
- Although the overall Rihanna half-time show quality mirrored the game, scores plunged to the mid 60s in the 4K streams due to the increased complexity of flashing lights, camera pans, and quick scene changes.
SSIMWAVE measured every second and every frame of seven broadcast and streaming feeds using SSIMPLUS®, the most accurate perceptual video quality metric. With >90% correlation with how human viewers would rate the quality of what’s on the screen. The technology enables streaming providers to deliver optimal viewing experiences at the lowest possible cost. Here is the breakdown of the measurements:
|Provider*||SSIMPLUS Viewer Score (Rating 0-100 – 0 is bad, 100 is excellent)|
|Provider 1 – 4K HDR Stream||83.3|
|Provider 2 – HD Stream||81.2|
|Provider 3 – HD Cable||79.4|
|Provider 4 – 4K SDR Stream||78.4|
|Provider 5 – HD Stream||75.2|
|Provider 6 – HD Stream||73.7|
|Provider 7 – HD Cable||72.7|
“Capturing live sports and maintaining end-to-end quality is even harder than shutting down the Chiefs’ offense when the game is on the line,” said Dr. Abdul Rehman, CEO and Co-Founder of SSIMWAVE. “We have great respect for those who bring live sports from the playing field to the home, and hope that our efforts can drive sports rights holders and the industry toward delivery of truly great video experiences for fans.”
The data presented corresponds to viewer experience on a 65″ 4K TV. Streaming services feeds were lagging behind broadcast in the 20 -60+ seconds range with Fox Sports App being the fastest.
Detailed results can be requested here.
In the nine months since it launched live sports video benchmarking, SSIMWAVE has measured more than 200 events on more than 15 streaming services across eight sports: Major League Baseball, the NFL, the NBA, the NHL, Formula 1 racing, the USTA in tennis, the PGA Tour and soccer, including the FIFA World Cup 2022 and English Premier League. In all, SSIMWAVE monitors and optimizes more than 2.8 billion viewing hours of live video per year across more than 6,000 live channels, helping to elevate video experiences for more than 150 million viewers.
About SSIMWAVE, an IMAX Company
SSIMWAVE is in the business of maximizing in-home and on-the-go viewing experiences.
It has improved the viewer experience of more than 150 million subscribers over billions of viewing hours to date. The world’s top streaming media companies work with SSIMWAVE, including Disney, Paramount Global, and Warner Bros. SSIMWAVE technology is protected with 50 patents and patents pending globally. SSIMWAVE has won a Technology & Engineering Emmy® Award (2020); a Primetime Emmy® Award for Outstanding Achievement in Engineering (2015); NAB Product of the Year Awards (2021 and 2022); and was named Best New Streaming Technology winner in the NAB Show (2021). SSIMWAVE is a wholly owned subsidiary of IMAX Corporation (NYSE: IMAX).