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BBC Planning To Launch Global iPlayer VOD Service

The BBC is reportedly mulling over plans to come up with an international edition of its hugely popular iPlayer service, in a bid to allow global audience to catch up with some of its top shows, according to BBC Worldwide, the corporation’s profit-making arm.

BBC Worldwide said that the move would help revamping its business model, and thereby help the corporation in raking in significant profits through its premium content.

The international edition of the iPlayer would include host of popular shows from the BBC’s array, such as Torchwood, Doctor Who, and Top Gear, along with historical stuffs from the BBC archives.

However, the international iteration of the iPlayer wouldn’t show domestic content because of the international rights issues. The exact launch date for the global version service has yet to be revealed.

Luke Bradley Jones, chief of the BBC Worldwide’s digital operations in the US, said in a statement: “Millions of people love Torchwood and would probably pay ten bucks an episode rather than two bucks”.

The BBC’s iPlayer service lets users watch the popular BBC shows for up to seven days after they were originally broadcasted. The service has been an incredible success story as it has already received more than 500 million requests to watch the BBC shows since it was debuted in 2007.

Our Comments

The BBC is turning more and more into a commercial entity and that might have a negative impact on the competition. Already some like Sky have already condemned the fact that the BBC gets the majority of the TV Licence fee and uses it to fund projects - like BBC iPlayer - which could be detrimental to its broadcasting rivals.

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Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.