For the first time in Indian sport, IPL joined hands with an online portal, YouTube, as its official partner to stream matches on the Internet. Having put its television rights on stake, IPL organisers were upbeat about the deal. They were confident of drawing in viewers who didn’t have access to a television set.
“I tried watching the first few matches but you need a high- speed Internet connection. The feed was not clear and very often the connection would die out. It would display an ‘error’ message and the streaming would stop,” says Tushar Abhichandani, a journalist who usually gets speeds up to 512kbps. He is not
watching any matches on YouTube now.
On the YouTube, Abhichandani points out that the ball tens to stop in mid-air and that kills the suspense.
“Internet audiences have to wait for a good five minutes before they can find out if it is a catch or a six. Some enterprising ones got all the information in real time from the website — www.cricinfo.com — and waited to watch the delayed action on YouTube,” he informs.
Anand Patil, a real estate professional, has been watching videos on YouTube and had no complaints about the connection. “But I guess the quality of the IPL matches being streamed are far higher and that is why they take longer to load,” he explains. He adds, “Even if they say that we need a 2 mbps line for us to watch it properly, the maximum we get is about 600 kbps. That defeats the purpose of advertising it on YouTube. I tried watching two or three matches and then gave up.”