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Watching the big game on the big screen may soon be a thing of the past as the NFL has announced that Super Bowl XLVI will be streamed live online and to select mobile users for the first time. Wild-card playoff games and the Pro Bowl will serve as precursors to the big game set to be held on Sunday, February 5, 2012 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Regular season games have been streaming online at NBCSports.com through SNF Extra since 2008 but this is the first time that post-season match-ups will be available on the Internet. SNF Extra features an HD broadcast, DVR-style controls, in-game highlights, extra camera angles, interactive elements and live statistics.
Rick Cordella, vice president of NBC Sports Digital Media suggests that adding these additional features will help supplement NBC's on-air broadcast for viewers that want more in-depth coverage.
In addition to the online coverage, Verizon Wireless users will be able to watch the game through NFL Mobile for the first time.
One thing that remains to be seen is how commercial breaks will be handled for streaming audiences. The Super Bowl annually attracts more viewers than any other event but not everyone watching is interested in the outcome of the game.
Advertisers spend millions to debut new commercials, a phenomenon that has taken on a life of its own over the past several years. Will streaming viewers be treated to the same entertaining commercials as those watching the on-air broadcast?