Fantasy gaming’s impact on sports consumption
Sports used to be an outdoor activity, sinking into the game and putting your feet up. But in the last couple of years, the tables have turned, and the game has changed. Now individuals are moving towards their comfort zone more than ever. With the incoming and emergence of leagues and expansion of the sports industry like Cricket, Football or Kabaddi, the deep endurance of sports doesn’t end but it has taken its space in our smartphones.
Fantasy sports has steadily increased over the past years with the growing numbers of applications and websites to help people know the current state of the competition. The Indian Federation of Sports Gaming (IFSG) coming along with Nielsen, a marketing agency released a new survey on how fantasy sports players follow real-life sporting activities more than non-fantasy gaming players.
This survey included 1,169 individuals who were interviewed in metro cities of India such as Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore, Ahmedabad, and Hyderabad. Out of which 566 people agreed to be a fantasy sports player and 603 fell into the category of non-fantasy sports.
No doubt that technology has brought sports fans closer than ever before. This has surely widened the base of sports fans in the last decade. According to Nielson Scarborough, fantasy sports users in the US increased from 8.3 million in 2012 to 15.6 million in 2017.
It has been found that in India, 37% of fantasy sports players consume more than 7 hours of real-life sports to remain aware of the sports content. About 8% of non-fantasy players consume about 6-8 hours a day.
The survey titled ‘Fantasy Sports: Measuring its impact on actual sports consumption’ also added that 78% follow the live match tracking through online applications using scoreboard while 66% follow news online to understand the match fairly. Most individuals follow Dream11 and MyTeam 11. Fantasy Sports in India has about 50 operators running the show among which Dream11 has the biggest market.
“India is sports loving nation. Alongside cricket which remains our most watched sport, we are witnessing increased viewership of sports like Kabaddi and Hockey as well as the advent shorter format sports leagues like IPL, Indian Super League (ISL), Pro Kabaddi League (PKL)” said Anwar Shirpurwala, the CEO of IFSG adding, “The fantasy sports platforms are enabling casual fans to engage with the sports they love becoming core sports fans. The growth of the online fantasy sports gaming platforms is resulting in a growth in the viewership of various formats of sports. The findings validate the strong potential of Fantasy Sports in contributing to the growth of sports ecosystem of India.”
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