Super Bowl 2012 Online: Streaming Big Game a Win-Win for NFL and Football Fans

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Super Bowl 2012 Online: Streaming Big Game a Win-Win for NFL and Football Fans
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Ladies and gentleman, the Super Bowl has finally arrived.

On the Internet, that is.

Super Bowl XLVI will mark the first time the NFL has made its title game available to viewers who'd rather watch it on their computers or are stuck keeping tabs on it while on the go.

NBCSports.com will have all the action available for free streaming, though with a decidedly different viewing experience. NBC's online version will allow you to pause, rewind and choose from a variety of different camera angles as you please, much like its interface for Sunday Night Football games during the regular season.

For those of you who don't care that much about the commercials, the Internet broadcast will feature online versions of all the ads.

Though, for those of you who do, NBC will post the TV versions on its website later on.

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The only real downside, aside from watching the game on a small computer screen as opposed to, say, a giant LCD TV, is the 30-second tape delay, which thereby makes the use of social media somewhat cumbersome to the overall viewing experience.

For folks with smart phones (and no other place to watch), Verizon is offering subscribers the opportunity to watch the New York Giants and the New England Patriots go at it on their handsets for just $3 through V Cast and the NFL Mobile app. Those who opt for the cell version will get the full NBC broadcast, complete with the live TV ads and Madonna's halftime extravaganza.

All in all, the move to the web is a smart one for the NFL, which is always on the lookout for new streams of revenue and different ways of getting its content out to the masses. Now, the league and its broadcast partners will be able to charge even more exorbitant sums for commercial airtime, seeing as how the audience will expand to include the entirety of the interwebs.

As for the fans, watching the Super Bowl on their laptops, smart phones and/or tablets may not be the ideal way to go, but short of an actual TV screen with the actual broadcast, they can't much complain about the new bevy of options at their fingertips.

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