TV Wins: Super Bowl XLIX Draws 114M Viewers

Another Super Bowl; another TV viewing history record.

The down-to-the-wire Super Bowl XLIX (Super Bowl 49) pulled in a Nielsen 114.4 million viewers for the New England Patriots win over the Seattle Seahawks -- 2% higher (2.2 million viewers) over the game a year ago, which was also a record.

It was not only the most-watched TV program in U.S. history, but the highest in terms of household rating -- a 47.5 rating/ 71 share -- in 30 years.

A TV rating is the percentage of all U.S. TV homes; a TV share number is the percentage of all U.S. TV homes that had their TV sets on. The rating was the biggest since the 1986 game, Super Bowl XX (Super Bowl 20). The highest rating ever was for the 1982 game: a 49.1/73.

The Super Bowl has been generally growing viewership over the last few years -- 106.5 million in 2010; 111.3 million in 2012; and 112.2 million in 2014. In 2013, a game on CBS, which pulled in 108.7 million, witnessed an extended electrical blackout and delay during the contest.



“NBC Sports Live Extra,” NBC's live streaming of the game, grabbed 2.5 million unique visitors -- up 9% from Fox’s results a year ago. In 2012, the first streamed Super Bowl, NBC, which also aired that game, pulled in 2.1 million visitors.

The Super Bowl halftime show featuring Katy Perry averaged 118.5 million viewers, 3 million more than Bruno Mars’ halftime effort a year ago.

NBC’s “The Blacklist,” which followed the game, earned 26.5 million viewers overall and a 8.7 rating among adults 18-49 viewers, the highest prime-time entertainment telecast of the big four networks since the ABC’s “Academy Awards” in March 2014.

It was also NBC’s most-watched scripted program in more than 10 years -- since “ER” averaged 28.3 million viewers on May 6, 2004, the night of the “Friends” finale.

4 comments about "TV Wins: Super Bowl XLIX Draws 114M Viewers".
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  1. Chris Smith from ASU, February 3, 2015 at 12:41 a.m.

    This past weekend the biggest of the biggest American sports game was played, the NFL Super Bowl. This past Sunday a record 114,000,000 people turned into watch the Super Bowl. But, since the NFC and AFC championship games were played, two weeks ago, there was so much hype that was surrounding the game. Since the AFC Championship game there was controversy that the New England Patriots used deflated footballs when they played the Indianapolis Colts. This controversy lead to the NFL investigating to the how the footballs became deflated. On the other hand of things there was talk over Seattle Seahawks’ star player, Marshawn Lynch, and his disliking of the media. So, both teams drew attention, causing people wanting to turn into this overly hyped game. Along with the hype leading up to the game, a majority of people turn into the Super Bowl to watch the always funny commercials that companies spend million upon. So, see that over 114 million people turned into the Super Bowl was not so surprising to me. When you have teams that are known for the trash talking, Seattle, and the teams that are known for cheating, New England, 100 percent of the time a large coward is going turn into both teams duking it out for the highest honor in the NFL.

  2. chi liang from ASU, February 3, 2015 at 1:05 a.m.

    The Super Bowl is the annual championship game of the National Football League (NFL), the highest level of professional football in the United States, culminating a season that begins in the late summer of the previous calendar year.
    That is pretty interesting to know there are more and more people watching super bowl every year, the people who started to watch super bowl increased every single year, we can see the ads on TV, heard the news on radio and also can be seen on the internet, the super bowl event every single year make people get together to celebrate and have fun watching the live game together!

  3. Nicholas Schiavone from Nicholas P. Schiavone, LLC, February 3, 2015 at 2:01 p.m.

    Dear Wayne,
    If MediaDailyNews wishes to be the journal of record in media,
    please clarify the audience definitions for the readers of MediaPost.
    You wrote: "A TV rating is the percentage of all U.S. TV homes; a TV share number is the percentage of all U.S. TV homes that had their TV sets on." Those definition are incomplete or incorrect.
    It would be clearer if explained that there are Average Ratings (average minute) and Total Ratings (total telecast).
    One hundred fourteen million (114 Million) viewers is the number of unduplicated persons 2+ who watched some part of the Super Bowl on TV, but did not necessarily view the Game in its entirety.
    The (average) rating of 47.5 is the percentage of all US TV households that watched the telecast during the average minute of the Super Bowl.
    The Share (71%) is the percentage of US TV Households that were using television during the Game that were watching the Super Bowl during its average minute. [Therefore, 29% of US TV Households using television during an average Game minute were tuned to something other than the Super Bowl.]
    We shall spare patient readers Nielsen's calculations of commercial audiences as opposed to program audiences, the measurment of DVR Game playback and the apparent non-measurment of mobile tuning and vieiwing. Anyone you know watch the Game on a "second" screen like an iPad or iPhone? OK? OK!
    Onwards & upwards.
    Nicholas P. Schiavone
    PS All corrections and emendations welcome for the good of the total readership, or do I mean average readership?
    Go figure! And have fun!

  4. Nicholas Schiavone from Nicholas P. Schiavone, LLC, February 3, 2015 at 5:44 p.m.

    By the way, Chris Smith needs to run a spell check, not to mention a logic analysis before publishing commentaries.
    I would hate to think that ASU signifies academic affiliation. Regardless, Smith's post is a Freudian slip of the first order.
    If a mess can be somewhat funny, his slip & slide is somewhat so. And someone should remind chi liang that the annual increase in US population as well as the nature of the match-up creates the potential for an audience that could be "absolutely" higher (000), but "relatively" the same (%). Wayne Friedman's Super Bowl reporting could have provided more context here. Perhaps there was too much "snow" in his TV picture. Go digital, Wayne! Cheers

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