When Chatri Sityodtong described ONE Championship’s video streaming mobile application as “mind-blowing” and “game-changing,” it definitely piqued our interest.
It turns out that the “ONE Super App” is just as revolutionary as Sityodtong suggested.
What’s it all about?
ONE Championship’s new software is a “YouTube-like” video streaming mobile application titled “ONE Super App.”
With a particular focus on martial arts in Asia, the application features ONE Championship videos and shows. It has also been suggested that the application will feature content from other promotions.
Sityodtong is planning for this software to become the ‘center of the ONE Championship universe.’
At the moment, the application provides access to:
- All ONE Championship live events
- A small catalog of previous bouts
- Detailed athlete biographies
Sityodtong has previously explained that the ONE Championship app plans to feature:
- ONE Championship ‘content’
- Other promotions and sports (kickboxing, karate, and more)
What’s the ONE Championship app like?
Well, the app is surprisingly nimble.
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It’s not jam-packed with all of the latest bells and whistles, but it doesn’t need to be. It’s simply an exceptionally developed mobile application that allows for quick and easy live streaming of their events.
There’s no need to log in, there’s no hidden paywall, and you will even receive a notification when the bouts are starting, all of which makes the ONE Championship app a must-have for anyone who loves watching martial arts.
Opening the doors for a larger audience
Previously, ONE Championship relied on Cleeng – a video streaming service – as a platform to broadcast their live events. With every show available on a pay-per-view basis, fans were previously asked to pay $10 USD (and fees) to watch an event. With 24 planned shows for 2018, a customer would be required to pay at least $240 USD to watch every ONE event this year.
The ability to watch live shows on the new application will be appreciated by all. Recently, the organization has received criticism regarding the limited (and sometimes non-existent) methods for those around the world to watch the promotion. In March, fans in Australia were left stranded and without a way to watch Martin Nguyen as he challenged for Bibiano Fernandes’ ONE Bantamweight World Championship in the main event of ONE: Iron Will.
But now, the mistakes of the past have quickly been forgotten as fans from the United States, Australia, the United Kingdom, and many other locations who were previously without access to ONE Championship, are now able to stream ONE Championship’s live events for free.
ONE Championship’s improved control
For an organization that is currently measuring themselves against criteria such as reach and how long the average viewer is watching the event, the platform provides them with an ability to grow further than ever before.
Why? Well, ONE can now measure and analyze the average behavior of a viewer who is watching through their application. Simply knowing the number of viewers isn’t enough. They’ll now be able to understand how the average viewer is watching the event for and whether there are particular moments in a broadcast that send people away. ONE Championship can now continually make adjustments to keep their product “sticky” and keep users coming back for more.
The NBA’s Adam Silver recently spoke about how their organization used similar data to make adjustments to their broadcast:
“From last season to this one, based in large part on the data we gathered, we changed the format of our game. We went from a possible 18 time-outs to 14 time-outs, we standardized the length of the time-outs, and we shortened halftime by a few minutes. And we made additional changes to the commercial format, because we were able to see exactly where we were losing fans.”
Once ONE Championship is satisfied with their reach and audience, they’ll begin to monetize their application. Sityodtong has suggested this previously by saying they will ‘wait until the user base is there’ before achieving their monetary objectives ‘through advertising or other means.’
What’s missing from the ONE Super App?
ONE Championship did announce that they would feature prior contests on their application, but these fights are the same that have always been available on their YouTube channel. The ONE Championship “Best Fights” are simply a handful of prior bouts that are used to promote their upcoming event, similar to how the UFC releases a “Free Fight” on YouTube before an event. The organization previously released a catalog of “Best Fights” on their YouTube channel, which are now all available on the app, as well.
At the moment, there is still no way to watch the catalog of ONE Championship bouts. So, if you were planning to download the app and sit back and enjoy Ben Askren’s fights with the promotion, you’re going to be disappointed to find only one of his seven fights are available to watch.
Expect movies, shows, and other promotions
Sityodtong has explained that the application will feature movies, shows, and other promotions.
ONE Championship recently got into the business of producing and publishing their own ONE Warrior Series on YouTube. The documentary-style series follows Rich Franklin as he bounces between countries in Asia searching for talented martial artists. It is understood that ONE Warrior Series is the first of what could be many martial arts related shows produced by ONE Championship for their mobile app.
As for movies and other promotions, however, there’s limited information available at the moment. Sityodtong’s earlier comments suggest there would be kickboxing and karate videos featured on the platform.
With the goal of becoming an “all-around destination for fans and practitioners of martial arts,” there’s also a possibility that ONE includes instructional content and technique demonstrations, as well.
The ONE Super App is truly a revolutionary move in the world of martial arts. No other major organization has provided a simple, fast, and free platform to watch their events quite like this.
You can download the ONE Super App on Android and iOS.
Jake Nichols is The Body Lock's Editor in Chief. Previously, he was the MMA Editor at RealSport.