BBC director general Tony Hall has used his first major speech since taking the helm of the public sector broadcaster to announce that the organisation will be prioritising digital mediums over terrestrial broadcasts.
The reshaping of priorities will see all content premieres on the BBC’s iPlayer service prior to broadcast, widening a legal loophole which allows people to watch BBC content for free provided they do not watch it during transmission.
Moreover the broadcaster will extend a pilot initiative to create content exclusively for the iPlayer alone.
The initiative, which rolls out next year, will see all pre-recorded programmes made available to view online from the start of each day, enabling viewers to compile their own viewing schedule.
It is also likely to increase the number of people opting to forego paying the monthly license fee by watching content online instead of through their television.
Hall also used the occasion to announce the launch of BBC One +1, mirroring commercial broadcasters in offering a time shifted channel for people who just miss out on their favourite shows.
In total the measures will require an additional £100m in funding, drawn from efficiency savings and a projected increase in sales of the broadcasters extensive back catalogue of content – which will become downloadable from an online BBC Store.
In his speech, entitled ‘Where Next?’ Hall commented: “When making a programme I want us to think, ‘how great this could be if we got it right’, not ‘What will happen to me if I get this wrong?’ I don’t want people to progress simply by stopping things happening and ticking boxes.”