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This Olympics Trend Will Soon Be Worth Nearly $650 Million

I have a smartphone.

You have a smartphone.

We all have smartphones.

It adds up to big profits for smartphone makers like <strong>Apple </strong>(Nasdaq: AAPL) and <strong>Samsung</strong>. But it’s almost just as lucrative for advertisers, social media companies and retailers.

Think about it.

Because our phone is always nearby, most people are connected to the internet every moment they’re awake. That means companies that want to sell us products or services online are always with us.

And often, they can target our attention via multiple channels at once.

No event showcases this symbiotic relationship more perfectly than the 2016 Olympic Games.

This year’s games have made history - and not just because of the athletes. It’s the first truly <em>multiplatform</em> Olympics.

The 2012 London Games were a stepping stone in this digital revolution. There were 15 million downloads of the official Olympics app that year. And 60% of visits to the London Olympics website originated from mobile devices.

On top of all that, there were hundreds of millions of tweets and posts about the games on social media sites.

This year’s Olympics have gone even further.

They’re the most connected games ever, which should create huge surges in revenue for certain companies (more on that in a minute). And it’s all thanks to the ubiquity of smartphones.

The Rio Olympics and advertisers are benefiting from a habit that first started a couple years ago. It has since become one of the fastest-growing technology trends...

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<em>Second-screen viewing</em>.

That’s watching television while simultaneously fiddling with another device - most likely a smartphone or a tablet.

In the case of the Olympics, that could mean tuning in as you scroll through people’s tweets about the games. Or half-watching the swimming competitions while using your device to order some <strong>Under Armour</strong> (NYSE: UA) gear <a href="http://www.investmentu.com/article/detail/51173/under-armour-olympic-advertising">worn by Michael Phelps</a>.

Even if you don’t do this, I bet you’ve seen someone else engage in the trend.

Like I said, it’s adding up to big money for advertisers. And the growth here is surging...

<a href="http://wp.investmentu.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/Second-Screen-market-Size.jpg"><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-51253" src="http://wp.investmentu.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/Second-Screen-market-Size.jpg" alt="Second Screen market Size" width="550" height="390" /></a>

For Millennials who fall under the “early adopters” section of the curve I outlined <a href="http://www.investmentu.com/article/detail/51070/wmt-stock-oh-shoot-moment">here</a>, the change in viewing habits is second nature.

Approximately 88% of Millennials are second-screeners. But it isn’t just the youngsters. About <em>half of all Americans</em> do it.

While watching the Olympics, we’re posting on social media... chatting with friends... pulling up interviews with athletes on YouTube... streaming events that aren’t currently being televised...

It’s a massive shift in viewing habits. And networks - and advertisers - have definitely noticed.

NBC is broadcasting 6,755 hours of Olympics programming across its various networks.

The NBC Sports app will live-stream 4,500 hours of events. (In the App Store, right now it ranks only a few spots behind <a href="http://www.investmentu.com/article/detail/50974/whats-next-for-nintendo-ntdoy-stock">Pokémon Go</a>, a game that’s had more than 100 million downloads.)

On top of this, NBC has partnered with <strong>Facebook </strong>(Nasdaq: FB) and Instagram to provide exclusive coverage and updates.

NBC also forged partnerships with Snapchat and BuzzFeed. Each day, they will distribute as many as 20 pieces of Olympics-related content.

During the Rio Games, fans will watch an estimated 41 minutes of Olympics coverage per day on second screens. As a whole, consumers already spend 30% of their viewing time - roughly two hours per day - on mobile devices. So that 41 minutes dedicated to the Olympics is really just part of a larger viewing trend.

The proliferation of the second screen is a perfect example of my <a href="http://www.investmentu.com/article/detail/50529/invest-in-next-amazon-amzn-following-three-cs">three C’s</a> at work. Once again, these traits are imperative to any company’s survival in the modern economy. They are: Content, Connectivity and Community.

Second-screen viewing embodies all three.

Companies at the forefront of this trend include:
<ul>
<li><strong>Disney </strong>(NYSE: DIS) (don't forget, Mickey owns ESPN)</li>
<li><strong>Alphabet </strong>(Nasdaq: GOOG)</li>
<li><strong>Microsoft </strong>(Nasdaq: MSFT)</li>
<li><strong>TiVo </strong>(Nasdaq: TIVO)</li>
<li><strong>Discovery Communications </strong>(Nasdaq: DISCA)</li>
<li>And Facebook.</li>
</ul>
Meanwhile, <strong>Akamai </strong>(Nasdaq: AKAM) and other tech firms are exploring ways to automatically recognize what consumers are watching on TV, then stream secondary content to their smartphone or tablet.

This trend even has the potential to revitalize some lagging companies. Just look at <strong>Twitter </strong>(Nasdaq: TWTR). It’s one of the year’s <a href="http://www.investmentu.com/article/detail/51135/trailing-stops-prevent-small-losses-becoming-unacceptable">worst-performing stocks</a>. But the release of its app on Apple TV could help turn things around.

Last year, Twitter won the right to live-stream NFL Thursday night games, which draw in an average of 13 million viewers. The company also announced a partnership with the NBA to live-stream two exclusive pregame shows. Those will even include elements specifically designed for Twitter interaction.

It should be a boon for Twitter, as well as the overall second-screen trend.

Second-screen viewing is quickly becoming the new normal. Make sure your investments in the media sector - or any potential investments - are adapting to this trend now.

Companies that don’t will be left behind.

Good investing,

Matthew
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