BBC plans to launch BBC One +1

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The BBC is planning to launch a BBC One +1 channel, its director general Tony Hall has announced.

Speaking at his first major speech since joining in April, Lord Hall said audiences expected a timeshift service that would give people "more of what they've already paid for".

Other innovations he announced included a revamped, personalised iPlayer, offering a 30-day catch-up period.

The service will also allow users to watch shows before they are broadcast.

Explaining the decision to introduce a "plus one" service, which would show BBC One programmes with a one-hour time delay, Lord Hall said: "BBC One needs to be on top form. It has to be the nation's favourite channel, and also its bravest."

He added the corporation would be investing more in drama and entertainment "so that all audiences find something they love on the BBC".

In addition, a BBC Store will be launched, offering people in the UK the chance to buy BBC shows to watch and keep.

Lord Hall said he wanted BBC Music to be a well-recognised brand like BBC News and BBC Sport, and that he wanted to offer more moments like this year's Glastonbury festival coverage, where six stages were streamed live to TV, radio, computers, consoles, tablets and phones.

Plans for the new-look iPlayer are unveiled

"Our audiences loved it. I loved it. I watched on my phone. Glastonbury reached more viewers and listeners on that one weekend than had attended the festival in its entire 40-year history," he said.

He also announced a new product - BBC Playlister - which will allow audiences to tag any piece of music they hear on the BBC and listen to it later, via streaming services like Spotify, YouTube and Deezer.

The director general promised the corporation would have a closer relationship with its audience in future, treating them as "owners" rather than licence fee payers.

A "personalised BBC" will allow viewers to rate and discuss programmes, and that "will influence what we commission," he said.

"People should not be saying 'the BBC', but 'my BBC', 'our BBC'," he added.

"Audiences demand to be involved and expect to participate. In future they will talk to us and we will listen."

In a wide-ranging speech, Lord Hall announced the following innovations, although he noted the biggest changes would have to be submitted to the BBC Trust for approval:

Glastonbury Festival This year's Glastonbury Festival was streamed on television, the Red Button and tablet services
  • The next generation BBC iPlayer, which will allow a "more bespoke" experience for every user. There will be a 30-day catch-up window, subject to approval.
  • Marking the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death in 2016, the BBC will fully digitise its Shakespeare archive, making it available for free to those in education and learning in the UK where rights allow.
  • The corporation aims to double the BBC's global news audience from 250 million users a week to 500 million by 2022.
  • BBC Playlister, a new digital service that will allow listeners to pick and tag any piece of music they hear on the BBC and listen to it later. The corporation is working with streaming services so that listeners can keep all their favourite music in one place, listening to it across whatever devices they have.
  • BBC Store, which will offer people in the UK the chance to buy, watch, and keep a selection of BBC programmes.
  • An extra 20% investment in arts programming, which will include a major new strand 'BBC Arts at…' that will showcase live performances from around the country. It will also relaunch The Space - the BBC's partnership with Arts Council England.
  • Open Minds, which will be a selection of carefully chosen packages featuring highlights from Radio 3, Radio 4 and The World Service.
  • Digital Creativity and Coding - a project to teach people how to programme computers, smartphones and a whole range of digital devices, due in 2015.
  • Building on its experience of covering the Olympics, the BBC will deliver live experiences to audiences made up of the best video, audio, text and statistics, across four screens - TV, computer, mobile and tablet.

Lord Hall said that, while the BBC was continuing to make savings following the licence fee freeze, his plans would require "another £100m a year" - which the BBC will have to find by redirecting "resources, money [and] people".

Director General Tony Hall : "A step into new territory"

He also praised the strength of BBC News, saying: "While I want BBC News to be alive to its critics, I don't want BBC News to be cowed by them."

"We are going to show the British public, who pay for this service, that we know - and will never again forget - what we are here to do.

"The people of this country make a bold and generous commitment in paying for the BBC. They own it, they love it, and they expect only the best from it. Every day we are going to show that we are worthy of that commitment."

Lord Hall acknowledged his vision for the BBC came under the shadow of recent scandals including those involving Jimmy Savile and senior manager pay-offs.

"No organisation as big as ours can avoid making mistakes. But I want to ensure that when we do make mistakes they are caused by trying to serve our viewers, not by looking after ourselves.

"And when we do make mistakes - and we will - let's own up to them quickly, learn from them, and move on."

'Really, really tough time'

He later told BBC Radio 4's World at One he "wouldn't consider closing a channel" to help free up cash for the rest of the network, adding: "I think people know that the public feel very strongly about all the services that the BBC does."

He also said he had not been in contact with any former senior BBC figures to ask them to return portions of their payoffs.

The BBC has been criticised for paying £25m to 150 outgoing executives - £2m more than their contracts stipulated - between 2009 and 2012.

"I feel that the payoffs were things agreed by the BBC for those people but, look, I acknowledged in what I said this morning - this organisation has been through a really, really tough time," Lord Hall said.

"When I go round the organisation, when I speak to people outside, I know how people feel, that the organisation has not been the organisation they wanted."


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  • rate this

    Comment number 69.

    50 xue - agreed about history. Most of the history available is 20th century stuff too, some 19th. Trains and WWII mostly. I'd like to see more history programming looking at older periods and non-British cultures. Neil Oliver's ancient Britain series was good. Get Tom Holland on board with Persia etc, and bring Mary Beard back, so was great for Rome programming.

  • rate this

    Comment number 68.

    Terrestrial TV takes the urine out of the viewers, and as for Skye, well what a load of rubbish that is. All we ever get is repeats repeats repeats repeats repeats repeats repeats and more repeats, day after day, night after night. we must all be very stupid to contribute to it financially, we must all be very stupid to contribute to it financially. Sorry for repeating myself.

  • rate this

    Comment number 67.

    I'm sure it will be a service that will only work in Apple first. After all they even call it the "i" player.

    Where is the Windows App BBC? Fastest growing platform, 10% traction already and the same accross devices.

  • rate this

    Comment number 66.

    Save for the news and a once in a blue moon nature documentary I haven't watched BBC1 for a decade. Maybe they should worry more over content?

    BBC4 on throughout the day would be money better spent.

  • rate this

    Comment number 65.

    How about getting your iFinger out from where the sun doesn't shine and developing a Windows Phone 8 app? After all, only 11% of the population use them........

  • rate this

    Comment number 64.

    Why cannot the BBC make the I player accessible to expats living abroad?????

  • rate this

    Comment number 63.

    +1 channels are handy, and pleased to see some overdue attention to the arts. Now how about tackling the neglected musical genres: folk, jazz, pop music standards? With the technology available, there is no excuse for their being ignored.

  • rate this

    Comment number 62.

    Aside from my earler facetious comment, for those asking what the point of BBC1+1 is because iPlayer is there, as far as I can tell, the iPlayer doesn't update immediately so you can't catch up as soon as the programme has finished. Having a +1 does make some sense because of that. Doesn't it?

  • rate this

    Comment number 61.

    "The people of this country make a bold and generous commitment in paying for the BBC. They own it, they love it, and they expect only the best from it. Every day we are going to show that we are worthy of that commitment"
    Generous commitment? It's forced on us and we have no choice what is done with the money gained from everyone with a TV paying this license. +1 is not a good way of spending it.

  • rate this

    Comment number 60.

    The same old BBC bashing comments:( but happy to give Sky +£50 a month.
    Whilst I don't agree we need +1 I welcome improved iPlayer especially if they get a substantial number of programmes available for 30 days and they make that 30 days after the series has ended.
    The money put into the +1 service should have gone to improving the red button and more HD channels.

  • rate this

    Comment number 59.

    Those who denigrate "+1" channels are missing the point... "+1" is a step along the way for ALL programmes to be put up on a self-service menu and downloaded on demand. Maybe with ads, maybe with fee, maybe free. Nowhere in today's announcement is it said that BBC+1 will be on Digital Terrestial (aka Freeview) - maybe it's Freesat or IPTV ?

  • rate this

    Comment number 58.

    You can do whatever you want but not with my money.

  • rate this

    Comment number 57.

    I'd be much happier if the BBC announced it was going to reduce the tax (licence fee) that we have to pay.

  • rate this

    Comment number 56.

    To all the detractors... Haters' gonna hate!

    Personally, I like the +1 channels. I've lost count of the times I've sat down half way through a program and gone to the +1 version of the channel.

    We need the BBC for lots of reasons. If I could (realistically) restrict my kids to watching BBC channels then I would. The cr@p that gets churned out on other channels is just brain rot!

  • rate this

    Comment number 55.

    10 years too late and a waste of money?
    Surely most people in the UK now have Sky+ or V+ or a digi box with a record function? Doesn't that make +1 channels kind of surplus to requirement?
    Iplayer improvements however... Great!

  • rate this

    Comment number 54.

    LOL - I guess stating not paying the licence fee is against house rules.

  • rate this

    Comment number 53.

    Will the new iPlayer release content promptly rather than the current 2 - 24 hour random timescale it has currently.

    Will the new iPlayer release all content which is broadcast in HD rather than restricting some for no apparent reason and failing to provide an explanation.

    These are fundamental issues that need to be addressed with the new service, otherwise I fail to see the point.

  • rate this

    Comment number 52.

    I loke the idea of BBC+1. I can only get iplayer on my laptop which has a small screen compared to my TV set. These days people watch TV in a variety of ways from low to high tech. This makes what we have already paid for available to a wider range of people.

  • rate this

    Comment number 51.

    To all guys saying that the +1 service is useless and we should use the iPlayer, can I ask you a question? (sincere, not mocking) what is the iPlayer?

  • rate this

    Comment number 50.

    Good news on the 30 days to watch a programme - however BBC1+1 does seem a little pointless if the i player works as it should. More good history programmes please - sometimes only one a week on! Even the decent repeats on BBC 4 have diminished significantly.


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