BBC gets OK for Interactive Media Player


LONDON -- The BBC will invest £132 million ($263.4 million) over five years to launch the Interactive Media Player, a broadband seven-day catch-up service that will allow viewers to download and watch BBC programs they may have missed, the pubcaster announced Monday.

The service was cleared by the BBC Trust on Monday, after the pubcaster's governing body amended proposals for so-called "series-stacking" that had been put forward by BBC management.

Series stacking allows episodes to be stored for later viewing and had been predicted to negatively impact the DVD sales of television series aired on the BBC. The Trust has restricted series-stacking capacity on the platform to just 15% of the total program storage space.

The Trust also has insisted that BBC managers investigate ways of making the Windows-based application compatible with other software operating systems such as Apple Computer's Mac.

"With the modifications which resulted from the test and the consultation period, the Trust is satisfied that the BBC's new on-demand services will create significant public value with limited market impact," BBC Trust board member Diane Coyle said.