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Launching FIFA will be another streaming rival for sports

Launching FIFA will be another streaming rival for sports

Looks like FIFA will be another streaming rival for sports associations and services alike.

Launching today, Tuesday, April 12, FIFA+ is a free, ad-supported platform that will release as an app (iOS and Android) and website. The free cost might be temporary, according to Variety, and there could be a subscription fee going forward.

Content includes live soccer games from domestic leagues across the globe, as well as archive clips and games, original content in the form of documentaries, and a match center for results and stats. “The Match Centre” is the most interesting and interactive portion of the service, offering fans the ability to enjoy interactive voting games, quizzes, predictors and fantasy games. It also will include a daily feed of news from 400 men’s and 65 women’s competitions.

What it’s missing, however? Livestreams of World Cup matches.

According to FIFA President Gianni Infantino, it is the first sports federation to offer such an extensive streaming service, saying it represents “a cultural shift in the way different types of football fans want to connect with and explore the global game.”

The streaming service will initially launch with five languages — English, German, French, Spanish and Portuguese — with plans to add Mandarin, Bahasa, Korean, Japanese, Italian, Arabic and Hindi within a few months.

The soccer platform will include approximately 3,000 clips taken from the FIFA archive as well as original programming, which includes documentaries, behind-the-scenes and long-form and short-form feature films. FIFA fans can explore a suite of original series based on stars such as former Brazil and Barcelona legend Ronaldinho, Dani Alves, former World Cup Golden Boot winners, six World Cup captains, Andrew and Stuart Douglas, and even footballer hairdresser Sheldon Edwards, among others.

Live matches are also a significant part of the offering, with FIFA claiming that the equivalent of 40,000 live games from 100 member associations and 1,000 women’s matches will be streaming each year. At launch, 1,400 matches will be livestreamed monthly. Due to existing TV and streaming rights agreements, these will be mostly limited to territories with lesser-known and underserved international leagues like Superliga, Polish Ekstraklasa and Slovak Fortuna Liga.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, FIFA’s Dave Roberts said FIFA+ aims to hit over 200 million users by the end of this year.

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