The US esports audience isn’t likely to reach Super Bowl proportions any time soon, but with viewer numbers expected to top 46 million in 2023, per eMarketer’s latest forecast, this is a large and growing segment of the sports entertainment ecosystem.
A study by Activate estimated that the US esports audience is on par with that of the NBA at 63 million viewers. While that comparison is impressive, it needs some context. First, the Activate study was conducted in large part during the NBA’s off-season.
Also, the threshold for counting an esports viewer may have been lower than for traditional sports because esports is viewed mostly on streaming platforms compared with traditional TV.
An NBA spokesperson reported that the league had 123.2 million TV viewers during the 2017-2018 season, or almost double the number in Activate’s study.
These differences notwithstanding, as esports viewership grows, so do the vital links between this emerging world of competitive gaming enthusiasts and the traditional sports industry. Read the rest at eMarketer.