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Sports-centric streaming Service fuboTV Sees 50% ROI — just from Auth0’s Security

Auth0 helps fuboTV with dynamic sign-in and sign-on scaling, while providing a hosted login page to power their TV Everywhere app integration.

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fuboTV is making it much easier to be a sports fan in North America.

Before, you might have had to travel to Manchester to catch the game in a pub. But with fuboTV, you can skip the flight and view it on your mobile, laptop, or big screen.

Although conceived specifically to fill a large gap in the sports-viewing market, fuboTV also offers live-streaming and on-demand events from NFL, NBA, NHL, MLB, NASCAR, golf, mixed martial arts, cycling, and college sports as well as the most popular soccer teams, leagues, and tournaments around the world. It also offers shows and movies, recently expanding its line-up to include AMC Networks. That expansion is part of fuboTV’s goal of becoming the cord-cutting service for sports fans and their families, says fuboTV Co-Founder Sung Ho Choi.

Prior to starting fuboTV, Choi and his co-founders David Gandler and Alberto Horihuela worked together at DramaFever, which brings international TV series and movies to the United States. They began to explore creating their own streaming business, but while Horihuela and Choi weren’t entirely sure at first that a service centered around soccer was the answer, Gandler, who played Division I soccer in college, convinced them with some eye-opening research.

Turns out, La Liga’s largest audience was in Spain, but the next largest was in the United States. The pattern held with the German league, the Italian league, and the French league. When they looked at the United States as a whole, the audience was actually very large. “We’re definitely filling a need,” says Choi.

Part of the challenge, Choi says, is that there’s a large fragmentation of sports media rights in the United States. “If you’re a Knicks fan or if you’re a Rangers fan and in New York, today there really are not that many options to stream your teams’ games.” fuboTV is working hard to change that. If you include all of the local stations that fuboTV carries, the service manages about 800+ live channels, which translates to 65 to 80 channels for the viewer, depending on the local market.

Offload: Authentication, Authorization, and more

Managing that many markets and rights is challenging enough. When fuboTV first came to Auth0, they only had a handful of engineers and were looking for a service to handle the authentication and authorization workflow. “I knew that that was going to be a rabbit hole that we are not going to have a lot of resources to handle,” he says.

But while Choi was initially just looking to offload the original build effort, Auth0 ended up offering more than expected. In addition to early help with dynamic sign-in and sign-on scaling, fuboTV uses Auth0’s hosted login page to power their TV Everywhere app integration with other third parties. “When you select fuboTV [from a third-party app like Fox’ FXNOW], the page that shows up is actually an Auth0 page,” says Choi. “We didn’t even have to host that ourselves, and we are leveraging the OAuth integration that Auth0 already has to provide that experience. That’s one of the big selling points.” fuboTV also used Auth0 for quick TV Everywhere integrations with third-parties that they’d otherwise have to build in-house.

Early Detection for Brute Force and Denial-of-Service Attacks

In an era where past password leaks from large companies have resulted in a prevalence of known username and password combinations, subscription services face huge security challenges, including brute force and DDOS attacks, particularly on the authentication endpoints.

“A lot of these get detected early on by Auth0, which has been helpful,” Choi says. “The cost to build the identity solution ourselves would have been significant. We’re getting at least 50% ROI on the investment just for security alone.”

Scaling for the Future

Planning for future expansion also means planning heavily for major sporting events like the 2018 Super Bowl. Knowing that viewership would expand for this single game, fuboTV worked with Auth0 in advance to ensure that they could handle the scale by disabling some legacy integrations and doing plenty of authorization and load testing to avoid disappointing any Eagles or Patriots fans on game day. Despite the huge demand for this event, fuboTV viewers enjoyed the Super Bowl without the interference of outages or poor buffering and enjoyed lower latency than any other live-streaming TV service.

Recognizing that World Cup 2018 holds a special draw for its core viewers, fuboTV is already planning for increased viewership with Auth0 supplying seamless and scalable authentication, authorization and hosting.

About Auth0

Auth0, a global leader in Identity-as-a-Service (IDaaS), provides thousands of enterprise customers with a Universal Identity Platform for their web, mobile, IoT, and internal applications. Its extensible platform seamlessly authenticates and secures more than 1.5B logins per month, making it loved by developers and trusted by global enterprises. The company’s U.S. headquarters in Bellevue, WA, and additional offices in Buenos Aires, London, Tokyo, and Sydney, support its customers that are located in 70+ countries.