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Roku is Device Most Used to Stream March Madness

Jeff Kotuby

As March Madness generates nice streaming numbers, one device stands out as a true top seed. According to new data from Conviva, a real-time streaming intelligence service, more than 40 percent of streaming users watched the NCAA men’s basketball tournament using their Roku devices. Amazon Fire TV was second with 26 percent, followed by Samsung TV (10 percent) and Apple TV (8 percent.)

Streaming numbers on TVs increased significantly in the first two rounds, with 68 percent share of time spent in round one, compared to 48 percent in 2019 and just 41 percent in 2018’s opening rounds. While streaming games on the PC lost market share, the increase in TV consumption came primarily at the expense of those watching on mobile, which decreased to less than half the share held during the previous March Madness. Conviva attributed this to the pandemic-trend of in-home viewing and the overall, multi-year trend of increased streaming via televisions.

Historically, the first day of Round 1 sees the most viewership. This held true this year as well — day one received 15 percent more streaming view time than day two, according to the Conviva report. Day one was fueled by plenty of upsets, including 15-seed Oral Roberts defeating 2-seed Ohio State, 12-seed Oregon State defeating 5-seed Tennessee, and 13-seed North Texas beating 4-seed Purdue.

It’s unknown what impact the NCAA’s official March Madness Live app had on these numbers. The service was featured heavily in marketing leading up to the games and serves as a one-stop shop for all things March Madness, including scores, highlights, live games, and NCAA bracket integration. The app is available for most major streaming devices like Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and Apple TV, Android and iOS devices, and Microsoft’s Xbox game systems.

The Sweet 16 tips off on Saturday, March 27 with Oregon State vs. Loyola Chicago on CBS.

Related: How to Stream the Entire 2021 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament Live For Free Without Cable

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