Austrian skydiver breaks more than the sound barrier

Posted on October 22, 2012


Online and print media have been full of praise and acclaim for Felix Baumgartner, as the renowned skydiver smashed through the sound barrier on Sunday, October 14.

The 43-year-old Austrian also broke a number of other records, including the highest freefall ever completed. However, he probably did not intend to break another, less adrenaline-fuelled record, by posting the largest number of concurrent YouTube streams.

Reaching a peak audience on the website of over eight million, it is a social media result showing that those working in SEO have no reason not to aim high – perhaps even loftier than the 24-mile-altitude from which Baumgartner stepped out of his capsule.

Google UK confirmed the figures, releasing a blog statement saying:

“We congratulate Felix Baumgartner and the entire Red Bull Stratos team for their successful mission, and for creating a live stream with the most concurrent views ever on YouTube.”

For the millions that watched the event, it was a spectacular occasion.

Having journeyed to the ‘edge of space’ for nearly two and a half hours, it took just nine minutes for ‘Fearless Felix’ to land in the Roswell, New Mexico desert.

Reaching speeds of 834 miles per hour (Mach 1.24), there was concern in the early stages of the freefall. With no air resistance at the height he was, Baumgartner spun out of control, risking unconsciousness. With his experience, however, he managed to bring the fall under control, before releasing his parachute after 4 minutes and 20 seconds and expertly descending to a perfect two-footed landing.

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