LaLiga – Facebook Live!!

For the next three years, LaLiga Santander in Indian sub-continent in countries like India, Pakistan, SriLanka, Nepal, Bhutan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Maldives have to follow Facebook to watch the live stream of matches, all 380 LaLiga games will be broadcasted on Facebook for the 2018/19 season.

Just imagine that we all have to watch the final three seasons of Messi’s game in phone.

You’re at the mercy of your mobile, mobile network and it’s data speed, Facebook account and a good internet connection (mobile or Wi-Fi). Facebook has bagged a three-year contract to live-stream LaLiga matches in the Indian subcontinent, not only football the social networking giant had signed a deal with Major League Baseball (MLB) to telecast 25 baseball matches in the USA. The La Liga season already started from 18 August, and the first round of marches are already over. After the first round of LaLiga games on live streamed via Facebook and I learnt that watching football via mobile is an acceptable experience, if you’re on the move but being restricted to the phone in your living room, will be a learning curve and mainly when the Facebook App in your Apple TV and even in the smart TV is not supporting the live telecast. I hope Facebook fix this issue as soon as possible or else LaLiga going to lose a significant amount of spectator in Indian subcontinent over next three years. Just imagine that we all have to watch the final three seasons of Messi’s game in phone’s 5 to 7-inch screen. WOW let it sink in.

The streaming quality depends on how good or bad your internet connection will be, and the maximum available standard is limited to 360p. This means if you do screen share from your iPhone to Apple TV this quality is not ideal for big screens, but for mobile, Facebook will have to improve its standards. Just like a regular Facebook Live, you can comment or share your emotion with various emotional icons available on the app. Most of you might argue that paying for data compensates for Facebook’s free live streaming service, but the internet speeds in India have improved, and you can get 1GB of 4G data these days for less than Rs 50, but that’s not the main issue, the issue is streaming speed which you going to get from your service provider. The best way is to watch the matches over the wifi connection. If you at some remote places with no internet connectivity and only satellite connection like Tata Sky, then forget following LaLiga for next three years. It will be like back to 70s and 80s when Indian football fans use to follow football over ratio and newspapers.

In a country with a population of 1.3 billion, less than 500 million users have access to the internet, according to a recent IAMAI report. It is also stated that most of these users reside in the urban cities. With such disparity in the penetration of internet, it’s a big ask for Facebook and LaLiga to expect immediate results. The future is undoubtedly angling towards digital, as seen with Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hotstar, but ditching the big screen is not an option, at least not in India.

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