The Season 4 premiere of HBO’s Game of Thrones set a series record for initial viewers and piracy, and took down HBO Go, HBO’s mobile viewing app, in the process.  The first airing of the episode drew 6.6 million viewers, according to Variety, the largest audience for a single episode on HBO since the Sopranos finale drew 11.9 million.  Game of Thrones had already pulled into second place for an HBO series for a season, behind Sopranos, at the end of Season 3 (see "'Game of Thrones' Tops Since 'Sopranos'"). 

The second showing of the episode drew another 1.6 million viewers for a total of 8.2 million.  It will take some time for the full viewership, including DVR viewership and mobile viewers, to become known.  Demand for the show took down HBO Go for a period of time during the episode, which may have an impact on the mobile viewer counts. 

Average total viewers for S3 were 14.4 million per episode when all platforms were included.

The show is still on an upward trend, with the S4 season premiere drawing 22% more than the comparable audience for the 3rd season finale and 50% more than the 3rd season premiere. 

Game of Thrones has been the most pirated series on television and expanded its lead with the S4 season premiere.  Over 1.17 million torrents had been accessed by 15 hours after the episode aired, topping the number that Season 3 hit after 24 hours, according to Excipio via Variety.