The BBC and Sky announced a landmark partnership deal that will bring the BBC’s popular video-on-demand service BBC iPlayer to up to five million Sky homes in 2012.
Today’s announcement means that later this year BBC iPlayer will be available to Sky homes directly on the living room TV. Using BBC iPlayer, audiences will enjoy the full complement of BBC programmes in a familiar, easy-to-use BBC iPlayer experience that helps audiences catch up on what they missed and discover new programmes to enjoy.
A core BBC value is to reach all audiences on a universal basis, so Sky’s plan to make Anytime+ available to customers regardless of their internet provider is an important development in helping to bring BBC iPlayer to around 5 million new homes in 2012 – at no extra charge.
BBC iPlayer has proven hugely popular with UK audiences since launching in 2007, delivering a record two billion TV and radio programmes in 2011. In addition to enjoying BBC iPlayer on the PC, audiences now have total freedom to catch up on BBC programmes on the TV, on mobile phones, and on tablets too.
This deal builds on a substantial history of industry partnerships that have brought BBC iPlayer to platforms like Virgin Media, BT Vision, FreeSat, Freeview, Sony PlayStation, Nintendo Wii, and hundreds of mobile phones, tablets, and Internet-connected TVs. Launching on Sky Anytime+ completes a picture in which BBC iPlayer is available on every major UK television platform.
BBC Director-General Mark Thompson said: “Having the BBC and Sky work together to further build on the BBC iPlayer success story can only be fantastic news for audiences. Making BBC iPlayer available on all platforms is key to our commitment to universal access and this agreement takes us one step further towards that goal. I’m delighted to take this first step on a story of innovation for both organisations.”
Jeremy Darroch, Sky’s Chief Executive, added: “Sky Anytime+ will go from strength to strength in 2012 and we are delighted that the addition of BBC iPlayer will allow Sky customers to enjoy the best of the BBC whenever they want.”
About BBC iPlayer
Launching on December 2007 as a simple catch-up website, BBC iPlayer has helped pioneer TV on demand by offering audiences the opportunity to watch selected TV programmes for up to 7 days after broadcast.
BBC iPlayer has since evolved, adding more TV programmes; including entire series and films, radio programmes, live TV channels & radio station, programme downloads for offline viewing and personalisation features such as Favourites and recommendations.
Variants of BBC iPlayer optimised for smartphones, tablets and connected TVs are also available, allowing audiences to catch-up or watch live wherever they are and on whatever device – offering access on the move over 3G and WiFi , or simple & convenient access via broadband on the living room TV.
Having the BBC and Sky work together to further build on the BBC iPlayer success story can only be fantastic news for audiences."