Television

BBC Radio's mp3 initiative gets positive response

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MUMBAI: BBC Radio has announced that its downloading trial using mp3 in the UK has been a success with more than 70,000 downloads of Radio 4's In Our Time in November. It also claims that the latest 'podcasting' service proving popular with technology-savvy listeners.

 

In Our Time saw the host Melvyn Bragg and guests explore the history of ideas, covering topics as diverse as the origins of life and the decline and fall of the Roman Empire during the month. Each edition was available to download for seven days after broadcast for use on portable players and computers, as well as being available via live and 'on demand' streaming.



Podcasting is an extension of downloading, whereby listeners can have new programmes automatically delivered to their computer as soon as they are posted on the web. Listeners download an application (such as iPodder) that checks the web to find the new version of 'tagged' audio files - such as In Our Time - the listener has selected.



The mp3 download experiment aimed to test the British public's demand for radio downloads. BBC Radio & Music Interactive controller Simon Nelson said, "We have been surprised and delighted by the demand for downloads of what is one of our most challenging programmes. It demonstrates the public's appetite for new ways of listening. Of course we recognise that we can't offer all programmes in this way but we look forward to working with rights holders to explore ways we could learn from developments like this to drive radio listening forward."

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