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.
This article was republished with permission from the publisher, Karl-Heinz Huba