People/Biz

BBC Store to close as audiences shift to streaming services

BBC Worldwide is shutting down its digital download store as audiences gravitate towards streaming services like Netflix, Amazon and other third party platforms. “It doesn’t make sense for us to invest ...
May 26, 2017

BBC Worldwide is shutting down its digital download store as audiences gravitate towards streaming services like Netflix, Amazon and other third party platforms.

“It doesn’t make sense for us to invest further in BBC Store where demand has not been as strong as we’d hoped in a rapidly changing market,” said a spokesperson in a statement issued by the BBC.

BBC Store launched November 2015 with the aim of allowing UK consumers to purchase and download episodes or series from the BBC and BBC Studios, such as Top Gear (pictured) and Planet Earth II.

In an interview with realscreen, a spokesperson from BBC Worldwide said the store is shutting down in part because the pubcaster is coming under increasing pressure to generate income outside the licence fee, and the store was not seeing a return on investment.

For many years the main source of income for the BBC was the licence fee alongside income from commercial holds such as BBC Worldwide, said the spokesperson. But the costs of fulfilling the BBC mission to inform and entertain have gone up.

“For example, we need to have more content across more platforms to reach out audience and the cost of content is being driven up by new entrants to the market,” the spokesperson said. “So the UK government has challenged to BBC to find more sources of commercial income outside the licence fee in order to supplement its public income.”

Customers who purchased shows won’t lose out financially as the BBC is offering a full refund or Amazon Video vouchers so they can buy or rent digital downloads and will also be able to watch the shows they’ve bought on the BBC Store until Nov.1, when operations officially close.

The BBC will continue to sell shows on Apple’s iTunes and other download-to-own platforms as well as on DVD.

 

 

 

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About The Author
Daniele Alcinii is a news reporter at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joins the rs team with journalism experience following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.

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