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Beijing Olympics Sets Gold Standard: 4.7 Billion Global Viewers

Now here’s a share to tell the world about: 94% of the host nation watched some part of the Beijing Olympics.

Nielsen Media Research estimated that 4.7 billion viewers watched some part of the Summer Olympics, about 70% of Earth’s population was engaged making the Beijing Games the most-viewed event in TV history.The figure surpassed the 3.9 billion who watched some part of the Athens Games in 2004. Four years earlier, the Sydney Games garnered some 3.6 billion.

South Korea matched China’s 94 share, albeit gauged against a smaller population base, while 93% of Mexican residents saw some part of the Games.

The Summer Games ranked as the most-viewed TV event ever in the States, with a total audience of 211 million and an average daily audience of 27 million people.

NBC Universal, which carried the Beijing Olympics on an array of outlets, put the total at 214 million.