Friday 1 February 2013, 15:19
After the relaunch of the blog it feels like a good time to have a roundup of news and stories about BBC Online over the last couple of weeks.
The most reported BBC Online story in recent days has been the record viewing figures of BBC iPlayer: 1.94 million requests gained in 2012.BBC iPlayer app
The Guardian reported on the increase of mobile and tablet viewing which along with internet connected TVs overall accounted for a third of the requests last year. “A surge in watching TV shows on mobiles and tablets on the way to work fuelled a rise of more than a third in viewing on the BBC's iPlayer video-on-demand service last year, with Danny Boyle's London Olympic opening ceremony the most requested programme of 2012.”
December saw a significant spike in iPlayer usage via mobiles, tablets and IPTVs with seven million programmes requested on connected TVs alone, a year on year increase of over +1000%.
There were also 13 million requests via mobile phones and 10 million on tablets, an increase of +596% from last year.
In the first week of January executive product manager for Sport Lucie Mclean blogged for us on the release of the new BBC Sport app for iPhones. A large number of you commented with many people questioning the lack of a release on other devices.
This week updates have been released to the iOS app allowing users to watch live and on-demand video clips as reported by The Next Web. “Given that almost a third of BBC Sport’s traffic comes from mobile during the weeks, rising to 40% at weekends and as high as 45% on a Saturday afternoon – it felt a little premature. People have come to expect video (and radio) through the main BBC Sport portal, so the omission was an odd one, even though we knew an update was imminent.”BBC Sport App for iPhone
The Next Web point out until the release of an app for Android and other device users without Flash on their mobiles will have to watch video content by downloading the BBC Media Player app.
Martin Belam blogged on his past experiences of working in online voting at the BBC and the risks of basing insights on the information gleaned from online votes. “Although people will look at the technical details, and blame the website security and the programmers, in the end it is the editorial decision to take the number [of votes] at face value, and to commission content on the back of this kind of vote that has been their downfall.”
This week I attended some of the Digital Bristol events organised by the BBC Academy. As well as a chance to meet BBC teams at the Technology Showcase and get a glimpse of some cutting edge camera technology from various Bristol providers, I also attended a panel discussion on The Right Environment for Exploiting New Technologies which included BBC Research & Development’s Dr Libby Miller.The Loudness Meter demonstrated at the Technology Showcase at Digital Bristol
Libby recently published a post on the Research and Development blog on Visualising near-real-time iPlayer usage data. “Our approach is to think about how real-time data might benefit our audiences and also BBC programme makers, and then develop some initial application ideas and prototypes from those discussions.”
You can catch up on more content from BBC R&D including videos from their In-Session series, a “curated series of video interviews that explore the key engineering issues defining the future of broadcasting and content distribution” by visiting the R&D blog.
BBC User Experience architect Paul Rissen writes for The Literary Platform blog on closing the gap between the storyteller and the audience and how BBC R&D can facilitate this: “as new technology, and yes, new media, become ever more commonplace in our lives, enquiring minds are toying with the ways in which the process of writing, delivering and experiencing stories might change.”
While in the same place R&D senior researcher Chris Lowis outlines some resources either in use or in development which allow BBC staff to deliver these new storytelling experiences.
An example of this is the Mythology Engine which “allows the storyline [of a TV programme] to be described using an Ontology. This storyline can then be presented either in a linear way, mapped to the traditional TV structure of episodes and series, or deconstructed to let you examine a single story arc within a complex narrative.”
Have a good weekend!
Eliza Kessler is the content producer on the BBC Internet blog.
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