Spanish Grand Prix – F1’s new streaming service F1 TV Pro was all but unusable to customers over the Spanish Grand Prix weekend,
F1’s new official live streaming app, F1 TV Pro, was rolled out in the week leading up to the race in Spain. Originally mooted for launch at the start of the year, the app was pushed back to allow extra time to get the app operational, with customers able to download from Apple & Android stores last week, as well as able to purchase the required paid subscriptions (priced at €58.49 annually for eligible European countries).
Customers were initially excited, checking out archived races which have been uploaded to the app, but live streaming of the Spanish weekend quickly dissipated the initial elation.
So Bought F1 TV Pro (Monthly subscription), was hoping to give you guys a review of how it works, but all i'm getting is buffering and page crashes. They really should have waited on this.
— Darryl Cornelius Kinsey Jr (@dkjr12) May 13, 2018
Tried two different browsers, but the F1 TV Pro stream just keeps choking. pic.twitter.com/EIZCY62IlY
— Jonathan Gitlin (@drgitlin) May 11, 2018
Good job @F1 F1 TV Pro…..!!! 👏👏👏👏
Buffering non stop, no images ….
Can’t see the free practices, qualif … and eventually the Race in Spain … are you planning to offer a decent service for an annual subscription of 170.99 euros/year in France 👹#f1tvpro #bufferring pic.twitter.com/3wAcbjlsMx
— Nikolai Scuadra (@ScuadraN) May 12, 2018
With customers understandably annoyed about being charged for a service that wasn’t working, F1 TV Pro customers have been sent emails about partial refunds in line with the amount of time live streaming was unavailable. FormulaSpy understands from talking to customers that replays and archived material appears to be working correctly.
As Formula 1, under new owners Liberty Media, attempt to bring the sport to a wider audience directly through their own services, Forbes reports that the task has already cost management over 4 million dollars. This is due to US TV rights holder NBC pulling out of continuing to show F1. To ensure TV coverage in the US, ESPN picked up the slack, being given the sport for free for 2018.
Fan's may be experiencing problems with the live feed. The team are working hard to get this fixed. The race will be available in full straight after. All F1 TV Pro customers will have already been contacted about a partial refund. pic.twitter.com/IZnHhTCGdp
— The Official F1® Help Channel (@F1Help) May 13, 2018
Liberty Media boss Chase Carey said at the launch of the product that “This product is a work in progress, and we will continue to add features like Formula 2, Formula 3, expanded data and archives. We’re very excited to move forward with this important new dimension to our business.”