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BBC to launch global iPlayer exclusively on iPad at first

by Sarah Griffiths on 2 December 2010, 13:49

Tags: BBC

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The BBC's international version of its successful iPlayer VoD service will initially be exclusively available on Apple's iPad and require a subscription.

The service is expected to be a big hit in the US as well as with expats across the globe and in time it is believed the global version of iPlayer could become one of the world's largest subscription VoD services, subsiding the BBC back home, according to Paid Content:UK.

Luke Bradley-Jones, MD of told Broadcast: "There's a general acknowledgement in the world of VoD that there needs to be a hybrid business model - a combination of subscriptions, download to own and pay per view. I can see the value of that view and I believe it's the way that the global iPlayer will go in the medium term."

"However I can announce here that we're going to be adopting a pure paid subscription model for the global iPlayer for launch - in part to get audiences used to using the service, but more importantly so we can generate additional value from the service in terms of the user data that it gives us. We will also offer advertisers the chance to partner with us on the ‘free' areas of the service," he reportedly added.

The Beeb's UK iPlayer notched up an impressive 139m requests in October, making it Brits' favourite broadcaster-operated VoD service.

According to Paid Content:UK, Auntie's international channels like BBC America and BBC Worldwide has seen growing interest in specific programmes like Top Gear and Torchwood making them perfect for export on a VoD basis.

Furthermore, BBC Worldwide has reportedly already been experimenting with VoD shows via iTunes for a while and has around 1,000 episodes available via Apple's store. It is estimated BBC worldwide pulled in a staggering £10m from channels in 2008 to 2009.

HEXUS Forums :: 6 Comments

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Waste of good money
Whose money is being wasted?
Nice to see the Beeb has learnt from the launch debacle of iPlayer in the UK where there was uproar because it would only run on Windows platforms. They would be crazy to launch another service tied to one platform again - Oh wait a minute - that's exactly what they are doing again. Nice one Beeb.
Way to screw over the non-apple users. Also how about getting iplayer working on my freesat box correctly first!
Waste of good money

“exclusively available on Apple's iPad and require a subscription”… They are targeting the correct customers for charging a premium… (there's things I could go on to say, but I'll just leave it there)