Live streaming has quickly become a popular and expected feature with most bookmakers now offering a variety of sports and racing events broadcast live all accessible via their betting platform.
With the 2018 Cheltenham Festival fast approaching, it will be one of the busiest weeks for most bookmaker live streaming platforms.
While many bookmakers share similar live streaming platforms, streaming the same sporting leagues and competitions with minimal charge, there are subtle distinctions that make all the difference when choosing the perfect bookmaker for your needs.
Bookmaker Live Streaming - Our Comparative Analysis
With the 2018 Cheltenham Festival arriving, we decided to conduct an analysis of live streaming platforms offered by some of the world’s biggest bookmakers with a focus on horse racing live streams. We featured fifteen of the world’s most popular bookmakers in our analysis:
Best Cheltenham Live Streaming - Brands Considered In This Study
We took a look at each bookmaker across a number of criteria. These criteria were:
- Number of events streamed
- Access requirements
- Access requirements for horse racing
- General minimum bet to access
- General minimum deposit when signing up
- Number of horse racing countries covered
- Virtual horse racing offered
- Minimum number of sports covered
At first glance, there did not appear to be much to differentiate each live streaming platform. However on closer analysis, we were able to make valuable distinctions between the live streaming platforms offered by the world’s most popular bookmakers.
Data was collected February 19th through February 25th 2018.
The best bookmakers for live streaming - Cheltenham Festival
To determine which bookmaker we believe offers the best live streaming platform, we assigned each bookmaker a ranking and points value across each of the eight criteria. Upon completing this process, we were happy to declare that of the fifteen bookmakers in our analysis, Betfair offers the best live streaming platform.
Why did Betfair rank so highly? Firstly, the number of events streamed live at Betfair exceeds every bookmaker in our analysis, and in many cases, Betfair exceeds their competing bookmakers by a distinct margin. This is mostly due to Betfair’s comprehensive horse racing coverage.
Secondly, as with many other bookmakers, Betfair ranks well in terms of access requirements. To view regular sporting events you only need to have a funded account while to view horse racing events you only need to have placed a bet on the race you want to watch. A minimum win bet of £0.50 or minimum £0.25 each way will give you access to the live stream for that race.
If you’re not yet a Betfair customer you’ll be pleased to know that the minimum deposit at Betfair is a mere £5, while most bookmakers demand a minimum deposit of £10. This means you can sign up, make the minimum deposit and be watching live sports or horse racing within a matter a minutes.
Betfair also ranks highly when it comes to horse racing coverage with nine countries covered. Finally, if horse racing isn’t your thing, Betfair covers upwards of nine sports to watch via their live streaming platform.
Paddy Power’s live streaming platform came in second place, not far behind their competitor Betfair. While Paddy Power may not broadcast a similar volume of sporting and racing events as Betfair, Paddy Power did rank well in terms of access requirements and minimum bet requirements. To access Paddy Power’s live streaming you simply need a funded betting account or if you wish to watch a particular horse race, simply make a minimum win bet of £0.50 or minimum £0.25 each way bet. Paddy Power also ranked highly for horse racing coverage.
In third place we have Coral. While they may not compete with Betfair in terms of sporting and racing events to view, they are competitive in terms of viewing requirements with the only requirement being a funded betting account or in the case of horse racing, placing a bet of at least £1 on the race that you wish to watch. If you’re a new customer you’ll be pleased to know that Coral also ranks highly when it comes to the minimum deposit required to access Coral’s live streaming platform. Coral, with rival bookmaker Paddy Power, also ranked well in terms of sports and horse racing available for viewing.
Which bookmaker offers the most streamed events
Before we declare which bookmakers ranked highly in this category, it has to be said that the majority of bookmakers are to put it mildly, reluctant to provide precise figures on the number of live streaming events they broadcast each week, month or year.
Having said that, Betfair, William Hill, Ladbrokes and bet365 all ranked highest among the bookmakers in our analysis offering a serious number of sporting and racing events for viewing. While some bookmakers offer live streaming across a broad range of sporting events, others, such as Paddy Power and Coral, focus on horse racing.
Live streaming access requirements
The majority of bookmakers offer two options when it comes to accessing their live streaming platform. Firstly, users can place a minimum bet within the previous 24 hours or secondly, they can simply have an account with a positive balance. It should be noted however that a number of bookmakers have a minimum balance requirement.
Fortunately, the majority of bookmakers in our study allow customers to access their live streaming platform by simply having a positive betting account balance, while others such as Betsafe, Boylesports, 888sport and BetVictor require their customers to have placed a minimum bet (typically £1) within the previous 24 hours.
When it comes to horse racing, each bookmaker in our study requires customers to have placed a bet on the race that they wish to watch. In most cases this is a minimum bet of £1, however in the case of Betfair, Paddy Power and bet365 customers only need to make a minimum win bet of £0.50 or a minimum each way bet of £0.25.
Minimum stakes and minimum deposits
While the positive account balance may be the preferred requirement among the majority of bettors, a minority prefer to have simply placed a bet within the previous 24 hours. But let’s face it, if you’re an active bettor on any major site offering live streaming such as bet365, Betfair, William Hill or Ladbrokes, you will have likely placed a bet within the previous 24 hours, giving you access to your bookmaker’s live sports streams. While the majority of bookmakers have a minimum qualifying bet of £1, the minimum bet ranges from £2 (for Betfair, bet365 and Betway) to £0.50 (for Paddy Power and Betsafe).
Of course, if you wish to watch live racing, in the majority of instances you will be required to have placed a bet on the race that you want to watch.
It’s also worth noting the minimum first deposit. Why? Many people accessing bookmaker live streams have no interest in placing bets, but are simply interested in watching live streams of their favourite football leagues, basketball and ice hockey tournaments not to mention of course, major horse racing events such as Cheltenham.
So which bookmakers demand the lowest minimum first deposit? The majority of bookmakers have a minimum deposit of £10, while others such as Betfair, Coral, Marathonbet, Betfred, Ladbrokes, Unibet and BetVictor require a minimum deposit of just £5. This is particularly good news if you are a casual punter who just wants to watch your favourite sporting leagues or if you are a once a year punter and wants to watch live streams of major racing events such as the Cheltenham Festival.
Horse racing coverage
Which bookmakers in our study offer the broadest range of racing events? The good news for racing fans is that each bookmaker in our study offers live streams of horse racing. But while some bookmakers such as Sportingbet, Betway, BetVictor and Marathonbet offer a limited range of racing events, others such as Betfair, William Hill, Paddy Power, Betfred, Betsafe and Boylesports offer horse racing from at least six countries, with racing from the United Kingdom, Ireland, South Africa, USA, Australia and select Asian racing events the most common among bookmakers in our study.
With the Cheltenham Festival approaching, many racing fans will be keen to access live streaming of the great event. Most of the world’s most popular bookmakers will be providing live broadcasts of the Cheltenham Festival, with standard access requirements, meaning in most cases, punters will only need to have a positive balance in their accounts or have placed a bet on the Cheltenham Festival race that they want to watch. If you can’t access television coverage, then Cheltenham live streaming is a dependable alternative.
While many punters access bookmaker live streams simply to enjoy the live racing coverage, a number of punters enjoy having access to live sports events from around the world, with little required in the way of expense.
Bookmaker live streams offer punters access to sporting leagues and tournaments that are not available via alternative online subscription streaming services or via local satellite television providers. With access to major football leagues and tournaments around Europe and the world, major basketball competitions and tournaments from both North America and Europe, popular ice hockey leagues and competitions, not to mention live tennis action across both the ATP and WTA tours, it’s no wonder bookmaker live streams have become an increasingly popular way to enjoy live sport from around the world.
The majority of bookmakers in our study provide a more than adequate range of live sports to enjoy, with bet365 leading the way with a minimum of twenty sports available while Betsafe, Betfair and Marathonbet each exceeding the average number of sports offered across the bookmakers in our study.
While the majority of bookmakers are reluctant to provide precise figures when it comes to their live streaming service, a comparative analysis can still glean insights. Completing an analysis across fifteen of the world’s most popular bookmakers, we concluded that the best bookmaker for live streaming was Betfair, with both Paddy Power and Coral providing an excellent platform particularly when it comes to live streaming.
While some bookmaker live streaming platforms may be superior to others, each provides access to a superb range of sporting and racing events broadcast from around the world, for little cost.
Read Our Detailed Bookmaker Reviews