Through three weeks, YouTube TV’s presentation of NFL Sunday Ticket has been very well-received. The picture quality is excellent, the latency is quite low, and instances of freezing or buffering have been minimal.
One area that has been a pain point for some viewers (including myself) is the lack of customization options on YouTube TV’s multiview mode for NFL Sunday Ticket. You can’t pick and choose games you want to watch – you need to pick from one of the preloaded options. If your preferred combination is missing, you’re out of luck.
YouTube chief business officer Mary Ellen Coe talked to Deadline about Sunday Ticket’s first several weeks, and one of the topics discussed was multiview. Coe echoed the point previously made by YouTube that it’s tough technically to allow users to choose their own games for multiview. She also said that the company hears the feedback and is “looking to innovate in the future” of their relationship with the NFL.
Coe also said that YouTube has “a lot of insights on the game combinations and what matchups fans are interested in” and that those insights could be used to set the multiview combinations. As result of that, the company wouldn’t “need to provide infinite combinations” for multiview every week.
In a sense, you don’t need to provide infinite combinations. We actually will have insight into what are the games that are the must-watches, and then we can preload those combinations. I think as you see the season go on, the demand [for customization] will become less, because people will see the combinations they want will be up.
It’s not quite “infinite combinations.” This Sunday, for example, there are nine games airing in the 1 p.m. ET window. Assuming your local affiliates are airing one game on each network, there are seven possible games to watch on Sunday Ticket. At a maximum of four games on the screen at once, that’s a total of 35 possible combinations. With six possible games to watch, there are only 15 possible combinations. With only five games, there are only five combinations.
Even though you might need to scroll through five, 15, or 35 combinations, it can still be a grind looking for the particular combination you want.
Regardless, YouTube does seem to be aware this is a potential pain point for subscribers going forward and appears to fine-tuning its selection process as the season goes on.