BT Sport has revealed plans to broadcast every game in the 2019 VIVO Indian Premier League (IPL) live across its platforms, after securing a late agreement with tournament owner Star.
Coverage began at the weekend as the new edition of the Twenty20 spectacular got underway in Chennai – a match screened live on BT Sport ESPN.
BT Sport is using the tournament to showcase its new large-screen app, which enables live streaming in full HD 1080p, without the need for a set-top box, on Xbox, Samsung TV and Apple TV.
Andy Haworth, managing director of strategy and content for BT Consumer, said: “The VIVO IPL is one of the most exciting cricket competitions in the world right now and offers something for all of our customers.”
The move follows Sky Sports’ loss of IPL coverage after only one year, and follows an announcement by rightsholder Star of plans to exploit the UK digital rights through its own OTT service, Hotstar.
The Indian platform is the official digital streaming partner for the VIVO IPL 2019 and will also provide UK coverage of every game.
Hotstar is available on the web (uk.hotstar.com), as well as on the Google Play store, Apple app store and on the Now TV stick.
Additionally, subscribers can use Google Chromecast to stream Hotstar on any device of their choice.
Hotstar claims its coverage has transformed viewing of the IPL. Features include commentary in six regional languages as well as a “dugout” commentary feed, providing expert in-game predictions
Meanwhile a “Fan Graph” offers viewers the opportunity to scroll to high points of the match, track the number of simultaneous viewers and relive key moments during any game.
Ipsita Dasgupta, President – Strategy and Incubation, and Hotstar International at Star India, commented: “VIVO IPL has captured the hearts and minds of millions of cricket fans all over the world. We are proud to recreate the signature cricket experience in the homes of passionate fans in the UK, bringing them closer to the game.
“By leveraging our technology, deep consumer insight, and expertise in cricket coverage, Hotstar presents the VIVO IPL and all the stories surrounding the famed tournament and its heroes in an immersive and engaging style.”
In 2018, Hotstar set a new world record with more than 10 million concurrent viewers logging on to the platform from across the globe to watch the final match of the VIVO IPL 2018 tournament.