UK turns to online TV for US election

Huge surge in live stream viewing over night

The US presidential election sparked a huge rise in the amount of people watching online television - with three times as many people tuning into streamed coverage of Barack Obama's victorious election day.

Figures from ISP Plusnet suggests that between 2am and 3am figures had already doubled, but as the result became official between 5 am and 6am, traffic surged to three times normal rates.

Neil Armstrong, products director of Plusnet, said: "This has been the first major election of the iPlayer era.

"The internet has played a big part in this election and it's only natural that people have turned to the Internet for coverage.

Spike TV

"There was a definite spike in the amount of online TV viewing when there was all night coverage of the American elections and Obama's landslide victory.

"Demand for online TV was rocketing during the early hours as viewers tuned in.

"It was not only a good night for Obama but also for those services such as the BBC iPlayer. It just shows how more Britons are getting used to watching live, streamed content on their computers."

The BBC allow UK viewers to watch live streams of certain channels, including BBC News 24,on the iPlayer as well as through the BBC website – and it appears that their fare is reaching a whole new audience.

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Patrick (Twitter) is Global Editor-in-Chief for techradar, and has been with the site since its launch in 2008. He is a longstanding judge of the T3 Awards, been quoted or seen on everything from the The Sun to Sky News and is on the #CoolBrands Council. He started his career in football, making him one of approximately one journalists to have covered both a World Cup final and an iPhone launch.