World news - in broadband
If you are looking at the BBC News website from outside the UK there are some new developments to tell you about.
We are upgrading the technical quality of the video on the site for users overseas so that anyone anywhere in the world with a high speed internet connection can watch the BBC’s news reports in broadband quality.
Until now this has only been possible for users in the UK - we’ve been restricted from providing the same level of service internationally by the cost of serving broadband quality video. We did not want the BBC’s UK licence fee payers meeting this cost and in effect subsidising the service for people outside the UK.
Now, with the help of our partners in BBC World, the BBC’s commercially funded international TV news channel, we are making our broadband video news service available internationally. BBC World is funded by advertising and subscription revenue and the cost of the improved video service will be met by advertising around the broadband news clips.
So if you are viewing video from outside the UK you may see a short commercial before your clip plays. If you want to watch clips ad-free, you can still choose to keep the same narrowband video service we have offered you internationally up to now.
If you click on a video link and you are outside the UK you will see a “media selector” pop-up window with boxes allowing you to choose Windows or Real media, narrowband or high quality video. You can use the preferences link on the News Player to change your choices at any time.
If you have chosen broadband video, the News Player will launch and on some occasions a short commercial will play before the clip you've chosen. Adverts will not appear alongside news clips when it would be insensitive for them to do so.
We hope that for most users a short commercial will be a worthwhile trade-off in order to be able to watch some of the best TV correspondents in the business reporting from around the world, in high quality.
For the first time on the website we will also provide a regularly updated video summary of international news from our colleagues in the newsroom of BBC World television. You’ll see a link to it on the front of the international edition of the site.
A decade ago watching video online was the preserve of a small, dedicated and patient group of internet pioneers. Today millions use the web daily to watch and listen to all kinds of audio and video content. Traffic to audio and video on this website has continued to grow as more people switch to broadband.
We want to make sure we can continue to provide all our users around the world with top quality video news, and making these changes will allow us to do that.
I hope that if you are outside the UK you will appreciate the improved quality of our news video. Give it a try and if you do have comments or questions, I’d like to hear them.