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Wednesday’s Total Audience Delivery Registers 28.6 Million Primetime Viewers

NBCSN Posts Its Best Primetime Night of Rio Olympics on Wednesday

NBC’s Six-Day Primetime Adult 18-49 Rating Advantage over Other Networks Combined is Best in Olympic TV History

RIO DE JANEIRO – August 11, 2016 – NBC Olympics’ exclusive and unprecedented multi-platform coverage of the 2016 Rio Olympics continues to dominate the competition.

On Wednesday, NBC Olympics’ live streaming for Rio 2016 topped ONE BILLION minutes (1.05 billion) – the first time the threshold has ever been crossed for an Olympics. The 1.05 billion minutes of live streaming via and the NBC Sports app is up 232% from the equivalent day in London. This milestone comes one day after NBCOlympics’ live streaming for the Rio Olympics surpassed the ENTIRE London Games.

The Total Audience Delivery for Wednesday’s primetime coverage averaged a 16.5 household rating with 28.6 million viewers.

NBC Olympics’ Total Audience Delivery measures broader Rio Olympics consumption by calculating average minute viewing across broadcast, cable, and digital.

The 2016 Rio Olympics is the first in U.S. media history with primetime Olympic coverage on channels other than the primary broadcast network. It is also the first time that the broadcast network coverage, including primetime, has been streamed simultaneously on digital platforms.

NBC Olympics coverage on other channels and digital streaming has lifted primetime viewership by at least 7% each night (chart below).

DateTotal Audience DeliveryNBC-only viewershipTAD Lift
Sat. 8/623.5 million20.6 million14%
Sun. 8/731.8 million29.8 million7%
Mon. 8/831.5 million28.9 million9%
Tues. 8/936.1 million33.4 million8%
Wed. 8/1028.6 million26.4 million8%

After six days, the NBC-only average primetime viewership (28.2 million viewers) and household rating (15.5) have respective 286% and 210% advantages over ABC, CBS and FOX combined – the second-largest Games advantage on record (behind only the London Olympics), according to national data from The Nielsen Company. (NOTE: The household rating for the full nightly show through six days is a 15.6; the 15.5 referenced above is for coverage in the 8-11 p.m. primetime window which is used for comparative purposes.)

Among Adults 18-49, NBC’s six-night 8.3 primetime rating in the demographic tops by 419% the other broadcast networks combined (1.6 on ABC, CBS and FOX) – the largest advantage in the first six days of any Olympics (on record).

Last night’s NBC-only Rio Olympics coverage (8-11:12 p.m. ET/PT) averaged 26.4 million viewers. The telecast, highlighted by Katie Ledecky and the U.S. women capturing gold in the 200m freestyle relay final; Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte competing in the men’s 200m IM semifinal; Australia’s Kyle Chalmers outdueling Team USA’s Nathan Adrian in the men’s 100m free final; and American Josh Prenot earning a silver medal in the men’s 200 breaststroke final, posted a 15.1/27 household rating.

NBCSN on Wednesday night delivered its best primetime numbers of the Rio Olympics. The network’s live coverage – featuring the second half of the U.S. men’s basketball team’s 10-point win over Australia and the Brazil-Denmark men’s soccer match -- averaged 1.9 million viewers.

Additional NBC Olympics metrics:

  • The U.S. Men’s Basketball team’s win over Australia averaged 3.4 million viewers on NBCSN – topping each of the team’s games on the network at the London Olympics. The Brazil-Denmark Men’s Soccer match, which immediately followed basketball, averaged 1.3 million viewers to rank as the most-watched Men’s Soccer match of the Rio Games.

  • CNBC averaged 734,000 viewers from 5-8 p.m. ET – up 63% from the comparable day in London. Coverage featured rugby, beach volleyball, fencing, and table tennis.

  • MSNBC averaged 487,000 viewers for its coverage of water polo, beach volleyball, shooting, fencing and soccer from Noon-5pm ET – up 41% from last year.

  • USA Network’s coverage of beach volleyball, fencing, rugby, and basketball averaged 521,000 viewers from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. ET.

Through the first five nights of competition, Total Audience Delivery for Rio 2016 and the 2012 London Olympics:


DayRio 2016London 2012*Rio 2016London 2012*
1st Sat.23.5 million28.7 million13.0 rating15.8 rating
1st Sun.31.8 million36.0 million17.3 rating19.8 rating
1st Mon.31.5 million31.6 million18.1 rating18.0 rating
1st Tues36.1 million38.7 million20.5 rating21.8 rating
1st Wed28.6 million30.8 million16.5 rating17.9 rating

*NOTE: The 2012 London Olympics had no simultaneous live streaming and no competing primetime Olympic cable coverage.


1. Salt Lake City24.4/44
2. Denver22.3/42
3. Indianapolis20.0/33
4. St. Louis19.4/32
5. Columbus19.2/32
6. Minneapolis18.8/34
7. Austin18.7/34
8. Baltimore18.3/32
9. Cincinnati18.1/30
T10. Houston18.0/30
T10. Kansas City18.0/31

About NBC Olympics

A division of NBC Sports Group, NBC Olympics is responsible for producing, programming and promoting NBCUniversal’s Olympic Games coverage. It is renowned for its unsurpassed Olympic heritage, award-winning production, and ability to aggregate the largest audiences in U.S. television history. The London 2012 Olympic Games were watched by 217 million Americans across the networks of NBCUniversal, making it the most-watched event in U.S. television history.

--Rio 2016--