A recent study has revealed that fantasy gamers have started following, watching and consuming more sports due to their interest in fantasy sports. As per a survey conducted by the Federation of Indian Fantasy Sports (FIFS), as many as 60 per cent of respondents from a sample size of 1434 sports users surveyed, claimed to watch more sporting content than they used to earlier.

The study titled 'Understanding the sports consumption behaviour among fantasy sports users' has offered insight on the increased consumption of sports by fantasy gamers to augment their participation in sports' fantasy aspect.

Gamers' competitive edge drives up sports research

A massive 87 per cent of fantasy gamers claimed that they now research and browse for more information to enable themselves with a better strategy when using fantasy games apps.

“When sports fans create their own virtual teams online fantasy sports (OFS) platforms before the match start time, they consume a lot of sports content online to do their research,” explained John Loffhagen, chairman of FIFS.

“After the match begins, OFS users watch the sports match closely to check on the performance of the players they have selected and their own ranking on the leaderboard,” added Loffhagen.

Television still reigns supreme

Despite a sharp hike in the usage of smartphones in the recent past, TV remains the main source for watching sports.

As much as 51 per cent of fantasy gamers have admitted that they consume sports content for more than five hours on a weekly basis after playing fantasy games. A little shy of 40 per cent of users also get their information via social media, the study concluded.

Even though cricket remains the most popular sport in India, 59 per cent of fantasy gamers have confirmed that they watch new sports owing to their interest in fantasy gaming. Besides cricket and football, fantasy game apps have added basketball, baseball, kabaddi, hockey, volleyball and American football to its ambit.

Furthermore, the report also showed that after starting to play fantasy games, 48 per cent of users watch every match irrespective of team and country, which results in an increase of overall viewership of live sports.