London Olympics biggest in US TV history, despite gripes

By REUTERS
August 14, 2012 01:43

 
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LOS ANGELES - NBC's TV coverage of the London Olympics was the most-watched television event in US history, attracting some 219.4 million viewers, the network said on Monday.

Despite complaints during the Summer Games of delays in broadcasting popular events until prime time hours, problems with online streaming, and edited versions of the opening and closing ceremony, NBC said that more people watched the 2012 Olympics on television than the 215 million who tuned in for the 2008 Beijing Games.

NBC said that it also smashed records online, winning nearly 2 billion page views and 159 million video streams of its Olympics coverage.

NBC, a unit of cable operator Comcast Corp, paid $1.18 billion for the US broadcast rights to the London Olympics, and executives said earlier this month they expected to break even because of the strong TV ratings.

The network, which showed a record 5,535 hours of sports and ceremonies across multiple broadcast and cable networks and online, said its primetime TV coverage averaged 31.1 million viewers over the 17 nights of the Games.

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