BBC iPlayer to lose radio content as part of online overhaul

The BBC has revealed the iPlayer will no longer include radio content as part of its restructuring of BBC Online.

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It has also pledged not to use the iPlayer as an aggregator or to launch its own social network. It will, however, continue to work with third parties to integrate further social functions into the iPlayer.

“Radio and music will come out of BBC iPlayer, and we¹ll develop a new stand-alone product,” said Erik Huggers, outgoing director of Future Media & Technology. “All radio station sites, music events, podcasts and programme pages will be integrated to focus on interactive live radio, quick and seamless access to programming, support for new music and personalisation - on whatever internet-connected device you happen to have,” he said.

The broadcaster revealed the changes as it confirmed it’s to slash 400 top domains as part of its cost-cutting strategy, which will see its service licence budget cut by £34m to £103m by 2013/14.

It’s consolidating its strategy to focus on ten product domains. These will include News, Sports, Weather, iPlayer & TV, Cbeebies, CBBC, Knowledge & Learning, Radio & Music, home page and Search.

Domains including Raw, Blast, Switch and Video Nation will be among those to close.

The reshaped BBC Online will result in 360 job losses, staggered over the next two years. The BBC Vision division will lose 85-90 posts.

Erik Huggers, outgoing director of Future Media & Technology, said it will look at linking its websites with Facebook so that users can log in to the sites from their Facebook accounts.

“This is the first time there has been a single, unified strategy across the entire BBC Online proposition, and with it we’ll do less better and will provide a world-class digital proposition,” he says.

The BBC has also pledged to double the amount of traffic it passes to external websites, to 22m a month.

This story first appeared on newmediaage.co.uk
A line has been added to this article to clarify the position of BBC’s iPlayer

Readers' comments (12)

  • It is such a shame if the radio content is to go on i player, I have a long term illness and find it very hard to do any day to day normal activites. listening to the radio on i player is 1of the very few things I can manage. I will miss it terribly if it goes, Such a bad decision by the BBC. please rethink it

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  • Oh bloody hell! I love listening to Pick of the Pops again during the week. How very disappointing.

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  • For those of us living abroad this is a huge blow. The Radio content on the BBC iPlayer is our #1 means of staying up to date and in touch with the UK.

    Removing Radio content from the iPlayer will render the BBC almost completely irrelevant to those of us living overseas.

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  • Radio content isn't going anywhere. Firstly, I think the article above was trying to indicate that radio would be in a separate part of BBC Online, rather than integrated into iPlayer. They've assumed this based on the new product being called "TV and iPlayer". However, that's nonsense. The BBC have confirmed that radio content (live and on-demand) will still be available on iPlayer.

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  • Does this mean we'll lose the ability to catch up on radio, though? It used to be independent of iPlayer, so maybe it's reverting?

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  • Don't worry anyone who thinks that they will be losing the BBC radio content they get online as they are just replacing it the with the Commercial Radio and BBC backed Radioplayer.

    You can find out more about it here:
    http://www.ukradioplayer.info/

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  • I don't beleive it. It'll be like life without chocolate, the same but worse.

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  • This really will kill the Radio Star, when me and my partner lived in Berlin we had BBC Radio 2 on the computer every day & it was bliss, the reason i player worked so well is, you could listen & email people like Mark Radcliffe, Stuart Maconie & Jeremy Vine at the same time, prob the real reason for it is, it frees them up to charge for the TV that is put on the i player.

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  • (NB: I work for the BBC)

    Just to clarify. Radio content will still be listed in iPlayer and a new product is being developed that will incorporate all the existing features such as live streaming, on demand catch up, podcasts and availability on internet connected devices.
    source: Erik Huggers speaking this morning: http://www.techradar.com/news/audio/bbc-explains-why-radio-is-leaving-the-iplayer-923356

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  • OMG, In the Archers its bad enough that Nigel fell off a roof but to no longer hear the consequences will shake the country to the core. Outrageous, beyond belief, re-think BBC!!

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