The 2020 NFL season has officially kicked-off, but the lurking COVID-19 threats mean some of you can't watch the games in person. Only a handful of teams are allowing fans inside the stadium, and that too, in a reduced capacity. You can always live-stream the games on your smartphone, tablet, PC, or even your connected TV. But the experience can never be as memorable and enjoyable as cheering for your team from the stands with your pals.
Well, Verizon has something on offer that can make your 2020 NFL season more enjoyable. The company has launched a new, co-viewing feature on it's Yahoo Sports app. Called "Watch Together," it lets you live-stream NFL games while having a video chat with up to three of your friends, all for free.
Verizon launches Watch Together on Yahoo Sports
You don't need to be a Verizon customer to co-watch NFL games for free on Yahoo Sports. However, since Verizon's streaming rights don’t extend to computers and TVs, you can access Watch Together on a smartphone or a tablet only. That's a bit of a shame as co-viewing on larger screens would have been much more enjoyable. What's worse? Some games may not be even available on tablets.
You can also live-stream all local and primetime games through the Yahoo Fantasy Sports app, AOL app, and –strangely – Yahoo Mail. A new Videos tab on the Yahoo Mail app for Android and iOS will bring NFL games right to your inbox. However, the device restrictions apply to all these platforms as well.
Verizon says the NFL is the first launch partner for Watch Together. So we can expect the feature to extend to other sports leagues in the future.
Co-viewing concepts are gaining popularity during this unprecedented time of global health crisis. Video streaming giants such as HBO, Netflix, and Disney Plus have in the past partnered with a third-party service called Scener to launch text and video chat capabilities while remotely viewing a show together.
Amazon, Hulu, and Movies Anywhere have also launched text-based co-watching features. However, Verizon is the first to bring native video chatting abilities while streaming a game live.
Yahoo Sports PlayAR will provide a more immersive experience
In addition to co-watching, Yahoo Sports is introducing yet another new feature this footballing season. The new "Yahoo Sports PlayAR" gives fans a more immersive way to view NFL 2020 games through augmented reality (AR). It provides near real-time replays of key moments in every NFL game, overlaying the game's statistical data and information about players on the screen.
In addition to Verizon's services, NFL games are also available live on the NFL app and the NFL Fantasy app. Individual NFL teams' apps and websites also live-stream their respective games.