Despite hiccups, UFC.tv receives thumbs up

November 25, 2013

The Sports Business Journal (subscription required) reviewed the UFC.tv mobile application developed by NeuLion with UFC 167 as the test case.  It was an overall good review although the app had “some hiccups and feature oversights.”

UFC.tv is a free download with in-app purchasing capabilities with users having the option to purchase UFC PPV events from the app for $54.99 (HD), $44.99 (SD) which is comparable to most cable and satellite providers.  However, an upgrade is available on UFC.tv to receive a 6 month subscription to the UFC.tv fight library and a 50% discount for users purchasing a live event for $84.98 (HD), $74.98 (SD).

As you may already know, there are three camera angles (live, Red Corner and Blue Corner) on UFC.tv.  The corner cameras provide the raw sound without commentary according to the review.  Live scoring and pre-fight stats are available for matches and the app is interactive as users can submit their scores for all to see.  The reviewer was impressed with the vast content of UFC.tv

The review had issues with watching the live event from a mobile device.  Purchasing an event is not straightforward and may cause consumer hesitation.  There were also issues with the corner cameras.  Also, a twitter section dedicated for fan interaction where you can see other viewer’s tweets during the fight did not update.  Also, the fight library accompanying the app does not have recent fights although this may be on purpose.

Payout Perspective:

The rollout of the UFC.tv app offers fans an alternative to purchasing the event through their cable/satellite company.  I can see this being an alternative for the mobile viewing and for those cord cutters without cable or satellite television.  However, the one thing that I like about ordering the PPV is the chance to DVR the fights and rewatch them later.  Good example, many people rewatched the first round of GSP-Hendricks to see whether GSP really won round 1.  If NeuLion and the UFC can fix its tech issues, I can see this being a viable alternative.  It would also be good for the UFC business-wise as it would not have to share a PPV cut with cable/satellite providers.

2 Responses to “Despite hiccups, UFC.tv receives thumbs up”

  1. BrainSmasher on November 25th, 2013 11:25 PM

    One would think the UFC would give the fight library away for free to those who order the PPV. I know they cant under cut the price of the PPV from Cable providers. But getting access to the UFC library would be a huge incentive to go mobile and the UFC would cut out the PPV providers. The library doesn’t cost them anything. I would have it set up so if you pre order that months PPV. You get free access to the fight library for that month. You would just have to order 1 PPV that month.

  2. michael on November 26th, 2013 9:11 AM

    The ufc.tv app……
    In Germany we get it for free so that’s great but I will always remember that when I wanted to watch the Silva_Weidman event on my tv with the app, the replay was defect and the stream started right with Chris Weidman walking out and Joe Rogan saying sth like “not only has Silva not been beaten in the ufc but he also got knocked out!”. Talking about spoilers ;D

    It should have an option where you just get the ringside sound, without commentary or corner. that would be superb!

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