BBC’s New Streaming Video Service Takes Page Out Of iTunes Playbook

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Given its tremendous success over the past 12 years, it’s easy to forget that the whole iTunes concept was once a risky proposition people weren’t sure would succeed.

Well, leap forward to the present day, and even the U.K.’s much-lauded BBC is taking its plays from Apple’s playbook — by announcing that it is rethinking (or at least augmenting) its classic flat license fee by borrowing from the iTunes/Netflix model and charging users £5 ($8.25) to download their favorite shows.

The service, which will come into effect next year, won’t affect the BBC’s existing iPlayer (another example of the Beeb’s borrowing of an Apple creation), but will allow users to go back and download older shows — or whole series — from the BBC archive.

“It is a no-brainer,” a source at the BBC was quoted as saying. “At the moment viewers can only buy shows on DVD in somewhere like W H Smith.”

Some people have raised concerns about this mixed-model of television viewing, however, noting that it raises questions about what the enforced license fee should actually cover.

Whichever side of the fence you come down on, it’s another example of how Apple’s innovation continues to disrupt established organizations — and a further illustration of why Apple’s eagerly awaited TV could really shake things up.

Source: Daily Mail