Report: Super Bowl LVI Viewership Increased Around 12% Across Linear & Streaming YOY

Super Bowl LVI saw a massive increase in streaming and linear TV viewership, according to a new study by Samba TV. The data from the leading global provider of omniscreen advertising and analytics show that the matchup between the Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals was watched by 36 million US households, which represents more than 1 in 4 U.S. homes, and a 12% increase from 2021.

“In Q4 of 2021, every one of the top five television programs was an NFL game, and that momentum helped linear TV notch its first ratings increase since 2020,” said Cole Strain, Head of Measurement for Samba TV. “We saw that same momentum and excitement for the NFL carry over to this year’s match-up between the Rams and the Bengals with the NFL continuing its ratings winning streak gaining Super Bowl viewership year over year by 12%, reaching 36 million households.”

The Jungle roared loudly as Cincinnati had the second-highest audience market in the US in terms of viewership over-indexing the national average. Cincinnati viewers were over-indexed by 13%, which was only second to Boston’s 15%. Los Angeles was only the 12th highest as their Rams won the Super Bowl.

The study found that viewers were tuned in for this year’s halftime show, as 29 million US households were watching the performance featuring West Coast Hip-Hop veterans. This year’s performance saw a 19% increase when compared to the 2021 performance which was headlined by Canadian singer-songwriter The Weeknd.

“The power-house performances from Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Kendrick Lamar, Eminem, Mary J. Blige and 50 Cent rocked the ratings on Sunday night, shattering last year’s halftime audience drawing in millions of more viewers across both linear television and streaming,” said Cole Strain.

The legendary halftime show was a magnet for music fans, as the number of fans who tuned in for the show and left before the 3rd quarter increased by 60% when compared to Super Bowl LV. There were 1.2 million households who tuned into the Big Game during the halftime show and stayed for the rest of the second half.

“The halftime hype drew in millions of new viewers who came to watch the performances but who also stayed for the second half,” said Strain. “The number of households who started watching during the halftime and stayed for the second-half kickoff was up 41% year-over-year. No matter how you look at it, the halftime show was a big winner for the NFL.”