NEW YORK America Online has expanded its relationship with the National Football League to encompass game-by-game previews and highlights that will be made available to the Internet service's broadband subscribers.
The new multi-year sports agreement—the largest to date for AOL for Broadband—is part of an effort to attract people to the broadband service with exclusive content. In April, the AOL Time Warner Internet unit rolled out a new, enhanced broadband service, which looks to leverage its parent company's content and other exclusives to entice at-home broadband users to pay $14.95 per month, in addition to fees for its high-speed ISP.
The online football programming, called NFL@AOL, will include weekly pieces highlighting classic NFL rivalries, player profiles, player and team alerts, and clips from NFL Films, among other features. AOL broadband subscribers will also receive access to exclusive content on NFL.com.
AOL's broadband strategy is meant to help offset its loss of ad revenue and narrowband subscribers, who have migrated to high-speed Internet services over the past year. Earlier this summer, Dulles, Va.-based AOL reported that it had 25.3 million domestic subscribers at the end of the second quarter, a drop of 1.2 million from the same time a year ago and 846,000 from Q1 [IQ Daily Briefing, July 24].