Friday, July 27, 2012

The Olympics online -- first impressions

I've registered to watch NBC's Live Extra, live streaming of all 302 events in the 32 sports. I'll be able to see it in a Web browser on my laptop and using the apps I installed on my wife's iPhone and iPad.

I just visited the Live Extra site for the first time, and my first impression was "wow, a lot of ads." Here is a screen shot. What do you think?

Next, I went to the event listings. You can switch between the schedule of currently live events and events on any future day. You can also filter the listing by sport or live TV channel. (Over-the-air is not one of the channels, because one must have a cable subscription to access the live streaming). In the following screen shot, I have selected archery. Live archery events are available between 1/28 and 8/3. Two events will be streamed on the 28th and one will be a medal match. You can also sign up for email notification thirty minutes before an even begins.

This is pretty cool. I only had one small complaint regarding notifications. You have to sign up for notifications one at a time. It would save time and confusion if you could select several events at once and request notification on all of them.

Since there were no events streaming at the time, I clicked on I clicked on the viewer's guide and was treated to a 30 second auto insurance commercial followed by a 2:17 teaser for the days events, which included more advertising.
That was followed by a pause of about 30 seconds after which a second video loaded and played automatically. This one was a 4:16 recap of last year's women's soccer match, which was also preceded by a commercial. There were a bunch of similar videos queued up for viewing.

Well, those are my first impressions. The bottom line: a cool program schedule and a lot of advertising. I also wrote some posts on NBC's online coverage of the Tour de France, which cost $29, but had much less advertising.

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