NBC Sports Gold

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NBC Sports Gold
NBC Sports Gold logo.svg
Type of site
Video on demand, OTT, Live streaming
Available in English
Predecessor(s) Tour de France Live
Headquarters United States
Area served Varies by package
Owner NBC Sports Group
Services streaming service
Website nbcsportsgold.com
Registration Annual passes for various sports
Launched June 9, 2016 (2016-06-09)

NBC Sports Gold is a subscription over-the-top service operated by NBC Sports providing expanded access to several sports' content. The pass for each sport is sold separately. NBC Sports Gold is available on iOS, Android, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, and Roku.

History[edit]

On June 9, 2016, it was announced that the "NBC Sports Tour de France Live" app would be relaunched as NBC Sports Gold ahead of the 2016 edition of the race, the rebranded service would also provide live, commercial free streaming coverage of several other cycling events for which NBC Sports was the rights holder including the Vuelta A Espana and Paris-Roubaix. The service was initially priced at $29.99 for a year-long pass.[1]

In March 2017, a separate "Rugby Pass" was announced, this pass provides live coverage of every Premiership Rugby match.[2] The service was further expanded in April 2017 with a new "Track and Field Pass" which provided access to 25 track and field events including the Boston Marathon and Diamond League events.[3] An additional "Pro Motocross Pass" was announced later that month providing access to every AMA Pro Motocross event, this was the first pass made available to users outside the United States.[4]

A second season of the cycling pass was announced on June 6, 2017, with the addition of new events including the UCI Road World Championships, Colorado Classic, and Volta a Catalunya,[5] the pass also included 30 hours of 2017 Tour de France coverage exclusive to the platform.[6]

The platform expanded once again in June 2017 with the announcement of "Premier League Pass." Priced at $50, the pass includes 130 exclusive live Premier League matches, a minimum of three per club, as well as match replays and original programming from NBC Sports and Premier League Productions.[7] The matches had previously been available at no additional charge to subscribers of participating cable and satellite providers as part of NBC's now defunct "Premier League Extra Time" package.[8]

In August 2017, NBC Sports Gold introduced "Notre Dame Football Season Pass." This was the first pass made available exclusively to customers outside the United States. Among the eligible countries were the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Spain, and Japan. The purchase price was announced as $49.99 for a full season or $9.99 per individual game.[9]

On October 5, 2017, NBC announced an agreement to air the Six Nations Rugby Championship, as part of the agreement, all 15 matches will be available as part of the NBC Sports Gold "Rugby Pass."[10]

December 2017 saw a regional expansion to the platform with the addition of "Blazers Pass." Blazers Pass allows viewers in NBA-designated Portland Trail Blazers territory to access 15 Trail Blazers games without a subscription to NBC Sports Northwest. The first game aired as part of the package was the Trail Blazers December 11, 2017 game against the Golden State Warriors.[11]

In March 2018, NBC announced a rights agreement to air the Champions Cup. Under the agreement, NBC Sports Gold will air all matches from the competition as part of its Rugby pass.[12]

In May 2018, it was announced that NBC Sports Gold would create new passes for Figure Skating and Speed Skating as part of a broader agreement with US Figure Skating, the Figure Skating Pass would replace US Figure Skating's IceNetwork.com service. Figure Skating Pass will include coverage from the US Championships as well as events from the International Skating Union.[13]

Beginning in 2019, NBC Sports Gold will offer an IndyCar pass which was announced as part of a broader rights agreement between NBC Sports and IndyCar. NBC Sports Gold will air untelevised practice and qualifying sessions, Carb Day at the Indianapolis 500, and Indy Lights races.[14]

Passes Sold[edit]

NBC Sports Gold Passes
Name Sport Year Debuted Location Available
Cycling Pass Cycling 2016 United States
Rugby Pass Rugby union 2017 United States
Track and Field Pass Track and Field 2017 United States
Pro Motocross Pass Motocross 2017 United States and select international locations
Premier League Pass Soccer 2017 United States
Notre Dame Football Season Pass Football 2017 Select international locations
Blazers Pass Basketball 2017 NBA designated Portland Trail Blazers Territory
Figure Skating Pass Figure Skating 2018 United States
Speed Skating Pass Speed Skating 2018 United States
IndyCar Pass Auto Racing 2019 United States

Criticism[edit]

The creation of "Premier League Pass" was met with disappointment in the soccer community, with prominent soccer website World Soccer Talk describing it as "a giant step backward." The website further noted that the move was particularly harmful to fans of league's smaller clubs.[15] The package was also criticized for not going far enough with 250 Premier League matches remaining exclusive to cable.[16]

NBC Sports Gold suffered serious outages on September 23, 2017, during a set of matches which included Manchester United against Southampton, the matches were moved to the NBC Sports App amid complaints on social media. NBC apologized for the outage, and offered refunds or credit to those effected.[17]

The platform also suffers from inconsistency in playback function across the different platforms (web, phone app and set-top app).

Although the Amazon Fire TV set-top box is supported, there is no app for the Kindle fire tablets despite the fact such an app exists for the regular NBC Sports platform.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "“NBC SPORTS LIVE EXTRA” TO BE RE-BRANDED AS THE NBC SPORTS APP", NBC Sports Group Pressbox
  2. ^ "NBC Sports Gold Provides Fans With ‘Rugby Pass’" sportsvideo.org
  3. ^ "Are NBC’s over-the-top packages, including the new $70 track one, a vision of the future?" Awful Announcing
  4. ^ "DIRECT-TO-CONSUMER LIVE STREAMING PRODUCT NBC SPORTS GOLD INTRODUCES “PRO MOTOCROSS PASS” WITH ACCESS TO ENTIRE LUCAS OIL PRO MOTOCROSS CHAMPIONSHIP SEASON" NBC Sports Group Pressbox
  5. ^ "NBC Sports Gold adds 15 races to streaming service", "Velo News"
  6. ^ "NBC Sports Gold Launches 2017-18 'Cycling Pass' Including Coverage of TOUR DE FRANCE", "broadwayworld.com"
  7. ^ [1], "multichannel.com"
  8. ^ "NBC to launch paid subscription English Premier League soccer streaming service"
  9. ^ "NBC Sports to Launch Internationally-Targeted Notre Dame College Football OTT Package" "multichannel.com"
  10. ^ "NBC Sports Group Acquires U.S. Rights to Six Nations Rugby Championship" "Broadcasting & Cable"
  11. ^ "NBC Sports “Blazers Pass” Lets Viewers Stream Trail Blazers Games Inside the Blackout Area" "Blazers Edge"
  12. ^ "NBC Acquires Champions Cup Rights" "This Is American Rugby"
  13. ^ "INDYCAR signs multiyear media rights package with NBC Sports Group " IndyCar.com
  14. ^ "U.S. Figure Skating Moving OTT Offerings To NBC Sports Gold" "Sports Business Daily"
  15. ^ "Premier League Pass marks a giant step backward for NBC’s coverage of EPL" "World Soccer Talk"
  16. ^ "NBC Sports: Premier League Pass needs to feature all 380 games to be relevant", "World Soccer Talk"
  17. ^ "NBC Sports Gold subscribers receive apology after Premier League Pass outages" "World Soccer Talk"

External links[edit]