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Industry Trends

BBC’s Mobile TV Trial Not A Success

By July 30, 2008July 30th, 2023One Comment

The BBC’s trial run broadcasting TV channels on mobile phones, has not been very successful according to some reports. The number of viewers tuning in to watch TV programs on their mobile handsets is not very encouraging.

According to data released by the BBC Trust, during the year-long trial of this new service, which ended in April, they reached a maximum of only 580 viewers per day.

BBC Mobile TVThe monthly consumption of content from BBC One, BBC Three and BBC News24 channels showed a high of only 13 minutes per month, during the trial period. The figures for usage of radio, during the trial period, though not yet publicised are said to be even lower than those for TV.

It is, however, possible that users of 3G mobile services have just not yet warmed to the idea of watching TV on their mobiles. Of the BBC’s mobile viewership 24% came from Orange and 51% from T-mobile in the month of February.

Be that as it may, it will be difficult to convince the BBC Trust, to add mobile to the list of distribution channels for its TV and radio programs. The TV channels in consideration are BBC One, Two, and Three, and BBC News 24; The radio channels are Radio 1, 2, 3, 4, 6Music, 7, Asian, and 1xtra.

The BBC, however, has stated that “the overall cost of delivering this proposal will not be significant.” This may be because they do not plan to add any new programs specially made for mobile viewing, but will reschedule existing content to better suit customer needs.

There have also been complaints, regarding the fact that this will be a free service, as the BBC is run on money paid by the tax payer, and other channels will be not be in a position to compete with BBC if they are unable to charge for their services.

Before taking any final decision on the matter, the BBC Trust has asked for viewer opinion and comments. Viewers can mail their suggestions to