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Nine ‘StutterVision’ Crashes State Of Origin Stream

Nine are blaming “unprecedented demand” for last night’s 9Now streaming service crash, amid one of the biggest sporting events of the year.

Game one of the perennially eyeball-grabbing State of Origin rugby league series drew 2.178 million metro viewers to Nine, who hold the exclusive telecast rights to the three game series.

Nine also holds exclusive rights to stream the games via its 9Now streaming service, but due to what Nine has called “unprecedented demand”, viewers were hit with stuttering, lags, and hangs throughout the opening of play.

Commentators assert unprecedented demand is different to unexpected demand, with questions raised over how adequately prepared Nine was to deliver a reliable stream of an always popular sporting fixture – one it exclusively holds.

Nine also holds exclusive streaming and telecast rights over the NRL Grand Final, while every game of regular season NRL streams on Fox Sports’ Kayo Sports.

Around twenty minutes into the first half, Nine acknowledged the problem.

Disgruntled viewers took to Twitter and were quick to note the ad-supported service’s advertising had no problem loading.

The issues were believed to be confined to the main stream, while the Spider Cam, Coach Box and Referee Cam streams reportedly unaffected.

The problems were largely resolved by the time the second half got underway.

Sydney and Brisbane had, unsurprisingly, the highest number of viewers tune in with 950,000 and 746,000 viewers respectively, according to Mumbrella.

With the regions added in the total national viewership was just over 3.2 million, slightly down on last year’s 3.456 million, possibly due to more people opting to stream the game.

It comes as Nine boss Hugh Marks insisted Nine and other free-to-air and pay television providers will retain control over television sports rights for the foreseeable future.

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