WWE Network having a big impact on streaming business with first two months of service, WrestleMania 30

WWE Network is having a huge impact in just its first two months of existence, topping usage charts and trouncing all but the biggest players in the over-the-top business with it's live stream on WrestleMania Sunday.

According to Qwilt, a company that provides video caching services to content creators, WWE Network is the second most popular streaming service in terms of traffic in only its second month of existence.  For April 2014, the company was second in percentage of all live streaming traffic, behind only video game broadcasting service Twitch.

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Considering that Twitch is free, one could argue that this put WWE in first place among services that customers pay to access.  The flip side being that because the service is so new, users may be devouring content and their appetite for the library will diminish in time.  This is a measure of how much is being watched, not how many are watching.

It's also a little curious that the poll included WWE Network among live streaming sites, as there isn't typically a lot of "live" content - especially when compared to the opening month's slate of baseball games on MLB.com or the 24/7 stream of gamers gaming on Twitch.

Specifically as it relates to live streaming, reporting from pwinsider.com breaks out data from WrestleMania 30 on Sunday, April 7, 2014.  On that day, WWE ended up third overall even when pre-recorded content providers were included.  The Network topped players like Amazon Prime and Hulu, finishing behind only Netflix and YouTube.

Traffic increased during the six hour live broadcast from New Orleans (four hour of WrestleMania plus the two hour pre-show) without a significant decrease in usage for other services, indicating that WWE was bringing new streaming customers online just to access their content during that time.

That would mean that WWE is increasing the market size for over-the-top distribution, and provides another explanation for why companies like Direct TV and Dish Network are so concerned about Vince McMahon's move to this model.

We'll leave it to actual media professionals (and the more savvy Cagesiders out there) to read much more into these numbers, but after some early technical issues and despite slightly disappointing early subscriber figures, a smooth stream for their biggest show of the year and a bunch of positive public relations probably have the team in Stamford feeling bullish about their decision to launch this venture.

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