BBC challenging iTunes this Autumn with online pay TV service

By Oliver Smith 27 July 2015
Doctor Who Series 8, from the BBC

The new service, BBC Store, will let you buy and download individual shows or BBC series like Doctor Who.

Facing the most hostile media landscape in recent memory, with the rise of Netflix, falling numbers of licence fee payers and the challenge of its Royal Charter renewal, the BBC will start charging for TV shows to own.

The public-service broadcaster is launching BBC Store this Autumn for people to buy and download individual shows or series. BBC Store is expected to feature 6,000 hours of recent shows and 4,000 hours of archive programmes available for purchase.

A BBC spokesperson told The Times: “Ever since VHS was introduced, and later DVD and Blu-ray, consumers have always wanted to own copies of their favourite programmes and have paid to do so — that’s exactly what BBC Store will provide for the digital age.”

Currently you can buy BBC shows as part of the TV content offered on Apple’s iTunes store and watch them through streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video.

“These have never been included in the licence fee, and programmes will continue to be available free on BBC iPlayer for 30 days, just as they are now. Consumers do not subscribe — they buy and download individual shows or series to keep — essentially BBC Store enables a ‘digital DVD’,” he added.

Photo from the BBC.