Apple TV Euro 2021 semifinal livestream interrupted by app glitch

A large number of Brits using Apple TV to watch the Euro 2021 semi-final found that the livestream was interrupted by a problem with the ITV Hub app. ITV was the only channel showing the match, meaning there was no other option available to those whose viewing was affected.

The soccer match saw England beat Denmark 2-1, in a match watched by around 24M people

Some British Apple TV users weren’t among them, however, with iMore noting multiple Twitter users sharing images of the error message they got when trying to watch the match.

Whoops, what’s gone wrong? We’re sorry, there seems to be a problem with the ITV Hub. We know this is disruptive, but please try again later!

Worse, many reported that when they tried to reconnect, they were treated to multiple ads before the stream dropped again.

ITV admitted to the problem, but didn’t offer any explanation.

Unfortunately we’re experiencing issues with Apple TV – please bear with us while we fix this. Apologies for any inconvenience.

(The company also used a phrase that is a pet peeve of mine: “apologies for any inconvenience” instead of “apologies for the inconvenience” – because the former makes it sound like a vague, academic possibility rather than the near-certainty for anyone reading or hearing the message.)

Soccer fans were unimpressed by suggestions that the problem was caused by the exceptionally high number of app users during the game.

Guess what guys? Exceptional traffic could have been reasonably anticipated.
…and planned for.
…and stress-tested.

Is ITV really in the amateur league? Seems so.

I would exclude ITV from major events until they can demonstrate reasonable capability and risk management.

Fortunately viewers will have an alternative for Sunday’s final between England and Italy, as it will be streamed by the BBC as well as ITV.