I recently switched phones from a Motorola Android device to a brand new Samsung one and one of the apps I didn’t bother re-installing was the NBC Olympics. After all, the games are over for another four years…or two depending on how you want to count it. Now it looks as though I may want to revive that app because NBC has announced that it’s not dead and will be re-branded as NBC Sports Live Extra.
This update has now taken place on both the Android and iOS versions of the app. The new content that will be streaming live through the app will come from events covered on NBC, NBCSports Network and the Golf Channel. Before you get too excited, the app will still require users to authenticate, meaning they must prove they subscribe to a cable or satellite package that provides these channels.
It’s both good and bad news for users. The app isn’t useless and, in fact, will be far from it, but these services are eventually going to have to learn to break away from the traditional models, which are proving every day to be more broken. Perhaps NBC would be better served by charging a nominal monthly fee for use of the app rather than being beholden to the traditional home providers. There’s little doubt that will eventually happen, but we aren’t there yet.