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BBC shines in Salford: Records smashed as 55million tune in to ground-breaking Olympics digital coverage

By Mancunian Matters staff

As the world wakes up from the biggest party in four years, and daytime TV wonders what it ever did without the London 2012 Olympics, the BBC are basking in having delivered the greatest ever Games from their Manchester hub.

A record-breaking 55million people across the world used BBC Sport online throughout the 16-day Olympics – setting the bar for the first truly digital Games.

And Salford’s shining saviour continued to rewrite the history books as Great Britain’s athletes continued to rewrite theirs.

Just under 52million viewers in the UK alone tuned in to the BBC’s Olympic TV coverage across linear stations and Red Button – the largest TV audience gained for a major event in ten years.

Phil Fearnley, General Manager for News and Knowledge, BBC Future Media, said: “The demand and astonishing feedback we’ve seen from audiences accessing our Olympics content online, whenever they want, on the devices they choose, has exceeded our expectations and helped fulfil this aspiration.

“We promised audiences would never miss a moment of the Games. We delivered on our promise and will build on this to leave a lasting digital legacy for audiences in years to come.”

BBC Sport produced an individual profile for every athlete, country, sport and venue across the Games and offered 24 HD live streams delivering every moment of the Games online – up to 2,500 hours of coverage in 16 days.

Requests for online video trebled from Beijing as 106million users watched footage online – with the top five most-requested events including Andy Murray and Serena Williams winning the tennis singles finals, Bradley Wiggins winning the men’s cycling time-trial and athletics heats involving Jessica Ennis in the heptathlon.

Ben Gallop, Head of Interactive for BBC Sport, said: “Our home Olympics was a special time for the whole UK and it’s been really pleasing for BBC Sport to have given our audience the chance to enjoy all that amazing action.

“There have been some great stories of people following Team GB’s rowing success at the shopping centre or watching Usain Bolt when they’re on the beach. We like to think it was the ultimate Olympic choice: on-demand and on-the-move.”

Monumental achievements were also made in the world of mobile media as the BBC’s official Olympics phone application was downloaded nearly two million times.

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