Canadian audiences engaged on all CBC television, streaming and digital platforms to cheer on Team Canada and athletes from around the world during the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, with CBC marking record high digital audiences and also ranking as the most-watched TV network in Canada throughout the Games.
“With so much uncertainty in the lead up to Tokyo 2020, it’s been incredible to see Canadians rally around the Games and the athletes, and gravitate to CBC’s coverage across all of our platforms and at all hours,” said Chris Wilson, Executive Director, Sports and Olympics, CBC. “Whether watching online, through apps, social media or on television, millions of viewers across the country tuned in and engaged with CBC’s coverage each day, demonstrating the continued relevance of the Olympic Games. We couldn’t be more proud to share the stories of these athletes with Canadians, and bring them every moment of importance from the world’s biggest stage. We look forward to continuing our coverage with the Paralympic Games beginning August 24, and doing it all again in six months from Beijing.”
CBC’s digital and streaming platforms including CBC.ca, the CBC Olympics App and CBC Gem grew historic, record high audiences over the course of the Games, with Canadians streaming more than 37 million video views since the beginning of Tokyo 2020, up 62 percent over PyeongChang 2018, which had a similar time difference of 11 to 16 hours for viewers in time zones across Canada. Additionally, live views made up 61 percent of all video views, highlighting the increasing popularity of live streaming on CBC digital platforms, and Connected TVs accounted for about 68 percent of the total time spent streaming Tokyo 2020 content on CBC Gem. In total, Canadians consumed nearly 17 million hours of digital Olympic content on CBC digital platforms, with time spent reaching the highest one-day total on record for CBC on Friday, August 6, the day of the women’s soccer gold medal game.
On television, 28 million viewers or 3 in 4 Canadians tuned in for Tokyo 2020 coverage on CBC/Radio-Canada. CBC ranked as the most-watched network in Canada for 17 consecutive days among all audiences and delivered an audience share of 21.4 percent in the English TV market, including 33 percent of viewers in the 25-54 demographic, a higher percentage than the overall season average across all English television (28%). Additionally, CBC’s all-day audience during Tokyo 2020 was more than 6 times higher than the 2020/21 regular season audience, with the largest growth attributed to morning and overnight audiences, indicating that Canadians changed their TV viewing habits to watch the Games.
The most-watched moments on CBC television for each day of Tokyo 2020 are as follows:
Day 0 – Friday, July 23: A peak audience of 1.36 million tuned in for the Tokyo 2020 Opening Ceremony at 8:53 p.m. ET
Day 1 – Saturday, July 24: 1.92 million watched Canada take silver in the women’s 4x100m Freestyle Relay at 10:53 p.m. ET
Day 2 – Sunday, July 25: 2.3 million watched swimmer Maggie Mac Neil receive Canada’s first gold medal in the women’s 100m butterfly at 10:06 p.m. ET
Day 3 – Monday, July 26: 2.2 million tuned in for the start of the women’s 100m backstroke at 9:54 p.m. ET
Day 4 – Tuesday, July 27: 2.5 million watched swimmer Penny Oleksiak Bronze Medal win in the women’s 200m freestyle at 9:46 p.m. ET
Day 5 – Wednesday, July 28: 2.26 million watched Penny Oleksiak place third in the women’s 100m freestyle semi-final at 9:56 p.m. ET
Day 6 – Thursday, July 29: 2.64 million watched the end of the women’s 100m freestyle at 10:06 p.m. ET
Day 7 – Friday, July 30: 2.48 million watched Great Britain win gold in the mixed 4x100m medley relay at 10:51 p.m. ET
Day 8 – Saturday, July 31: 3.12 million watched the final 100m of the women’s 4x100m medley relay at 10:22 p.m. ET as Penny Oleksiak anchored the Canadian team to a bronze medal, making her the most decorated Canadian Olympian ever.
Day 9 – Sunday, August 1: 1.9 million watched coverage of the women’s 1500m heats at 9:02 p.m. ET
Day 10 – Monday, August 2: 2.6 million watched Andre De Grasse race in the men’s 200m heats at 10:24 p.m. ET
Day 11 – Tuesday, August 3: 2.1 million watched the semi-finals of the Men’s 110m hurdles at 10:17 p.m. ET
Day 12 – Wednesday, August 4: 2.5 million watched the men’s 4x100m relay heats on the track at 9:02 p.m. ET
Day 13 – Thursday, August 5: 1.92 million watched highlights of Damian Warner’s gold medal-winning performance in the men’s decathlon at 10:15 p.m. ET
Day 14 – Friday, August 6: 4.4 million watched Julia Grosso’s gold medal-winning penalty kick in the historic Canada vs. Sweden women’s soccer gold medal final at 10:47 a.m. ET
Day 15 – Saturday, August 7: 2 million watched Canada’s Kelsey MItchell win gold in the women’s cycling track sprint final at 10:54 p.m. ET
Day 16 – Sunday, August 8: A peak audience of 1.2 million watched the Closing Ceremony at 8:51 a.m. ET.
TV Data Source: Numeris TV Meter, CBC Total, P2+, 2a-2a, Total Canada, AMA, DlyRch, & CumRch, generated by InfoSys+TV. Based on preliminary overnight data.
Digital Data Source: Adobe Analytics, 2021