Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

As cord-cutting becomes increasingly prevalent, live sports — one of the last bastions representing the age of cable TV — represent a major opportunity for streamers and tech giants to set themselves apart from the pack.

Driving the news: Apple has hired Amazon executive Jim DeLorenzo to head up sports for Apple TV, signaling its intent to lean more heavily into sports programming and potentially invest millions in live sports rights.

Big Tech:

  • Amazon: They hired DeLorenzo in March 2016, just before losing the NFL Thursday Night Football bidding war to Twitter. But they took back TNF in 2017, and just inked a massive, three-year deal that also includes exclusive rights to one Saturday NFL game each season.
  • Apple: Apple TV+ hasn't exactly made waves with its original programming, but they're far from giving up on that business, and the DeLorenzo hire suggests live sports could play a bigger role going forward.
  • Facebook: In 2017, Facebook struck a deal with MLB to stream one game each week. That was down to just six games last year, and the company has mostly removed itself from live sports bidding. Instead, Facebook is doubling down on its social media prowess with new products like Venue, a second-screen-focused app where fans can interact while watching live sports elsewhere.
  • Twitter: Following the loss of TNF rights, Twitter has focused more on deals that align with the platform's biggest strength: engagement. The NBA (iso-cam) and MLB (Twitter hitter) are all about fan interactivity, and various other media companies have similar deals to deliver short-form content. Twitter also signed a three-year deal with MLS in 2018 to stream at least 24 games per year, averaging over 600,000 viewers per game in 2019.

Go deeper: The sports streaming landscape, mapped

Go deeper

Twitter faces FTC fine of up to $250 million over alleged privacy violations

Photo: Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket

The Federal Trade Commission has accused Twitter of using phone numbers and emails from its users to make targeted ads between 2013 and 2019, Twitter said in an SEC filing published Monday.

Why it matters: Twitter estimates that the FTC's draft complaint, which was sent a few days after its Q2 earnings report, could cost the company between $150 million and $250 million. The complaint is unrelated to the recent Twitter hack involving a bitcoin scam.

Updated 41 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3:30 p.m. ET: 18,614,542 — Total deaths: 702,330 — Total recoveries — 11,181,018Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3:30 p.m. ET: 4,793,950 — Total deaths: 157,416 — Total recoveries: 1,528,979 — Total tests: 58,239,438Map.
  3. 2020: Joe Biden will no longer travel to Milwaukee for Democratic convention.
  4. Public health: Florida surpasses 500,000 confirmed casesModerna skirts disclosures of vaccine costs.
  5. Sports: The return of high school sports hangs in the balance — UConn becomes first FBS team to cancel football season.
  6. Education: Chicago Public Schools to begin school year fully remote.
Updated 51 mins ago - World

Beirut explosion: Death toll rises to 135, officials under house arrest

Photo: Anwar Amro/AFP via Getty Images

The death toll from Tuesday's explosion in Beirut, Lebanon has now surpassed 130, including at least one U.S. citizen, amid a search for answers as to why a huge store of ammonium nitrate was left unsecured near the city's port for nearly seven years.

What we know: The government says around 5,000 people are injured. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said current indications are that the massive explosion was accidental, despite President Trump's puzzling claim on Tuesday evening that it appeared to be a bomb attack.