Launch date set for Radio 1's iPlayer channel
The BBC Trust has approved the BBC’s plans for a new Radio 1 section within the BBC iPlayer, which will launch on November 10th.
The service will broadcast a range of on-demand interviews, recordings of live sessions, and other content, as first proposed by BBC Radio 1 last year.
Ben Cooper, BBC Radio 1 & 1Xtra Controller, said: “This is an exciting moment for Radio 1 and our young audience, and we can’t wait to get started on 10 November.”
The Trust has conducted a ‘significance test’ of the proposals, to establish whether they required a Public Value Test – the regulatory process for any proposed new BBC service or significant change to a service. Input into the significance test was also provided by Ofcom.
Trustees concluded that the plans did not require a PVT, and that a Radio 1 area of the iPlayer would benefit younger audiences, providing music and related content in the way they want to access it, and providing a gateway into the wider iPlayer.
Ofcom explained in its advice that any impact is likely to be small, although it identified some potential impacts depending on how the Radio 1 iPlayer content develops in future.
In approving the plans, the Trust noted the potential cumulative effect of gradual changes to iPlayer over time, which could require further Trust scrutiny in future through a PVT. The Trust has also set a requirement that the content on the Radio 1 iPlayer area should be distinctive and broad, and not concentrate heavily on any particular music or programme genre.
The new Radio 1 iPlayer video content will be available for the same length of time as standard iPlayer content, which is now 30 days.
BBC Trustee Suzanna Taverne said: “Younger people are a key and sometimes hard to reach audience for the BBC and other broadcasters, and we agree that this plan will help the BBC to reach them. It will build on the great success Radio 1 already has online, although it will be important to ensure that everything available through the iPlayer area is consistent with Radio 1’s distinctive identity.”