During the incredibly tense England vs Croatia World Cup semi-final earlier this week, cable streaming alternative YouTube TV messed up in a big way. The service was down for around an hour, according to YouTube TV’s social media help line, causing hundreds of thousands of England fans to miss out on the disappointment of seeing their team eliminated.
Reliability is one of the big concerns that is preventing cable customers from jumping to streaming services, so suffering a prolonged outage during a major sporting event is about the worst thing that could happen to a streaming service. Google is offering more than just thoughts and prayers, however, and in an email to subscribers, it says that it will be giving a week’s credit (worth $10 at current prices) to anyone affected.
“We’re really sorry for the recent YouTube TV outage during the FIFA World Cup Semifinal,” YouTube said in its email, seen by Variety. “To help make this right, we’d like to give you a week of free service.”
YouTube TV recently raised its price to $40 a month, which makes one week of free service worth a nice round $10. Given that I’ve had extended periods of downtime on my home internet and never seen a cent, I’d say that YouTube’s offer is reasonable.
In addition to offering some free service, YouTube also said that recordings of the England – Croatia match are available in the “Library” section of the service for any fans that enjoy emotional self-harm. Other DVR recordings made during the outage should also be back up.
YouTube didn’t give any indication of the technical reason for the outage, but streaming services have had difficulty in the past with dealing with the sudden influx of users during major sporting events.