As part of efforts to move its enormously popular ‘iPlayer’ service beyond catch-up TV, UK broadcaster the BBC has added a new feature which enables viewers to rewind and restart live TV.
At present the Live Restart function is only available on the iPlayer website: the BBC will eventually roll it out to the dedicated apps built for mobiles, tablets and Internet-connected TVs later this year.
Dave Price, Head of BBC iPlayer says: “We all know how frustrating it is when you’re stuck in a traffic jam, or delayed on the tube, missing the critical start of your favourite BBC programme. Live Restart solves this by giving audiences control. With one simple click of a button viewers can skip back to the beginning of a live programme, ensuring they never miss a moment of their favourite BBC programmes.”
BBC iPlayer launched in December 2007 as a simple catch-up website, and after going through a number of enhancements and iterations (with variants of the service being optimised for over 500 mobiles, tablets and connected TVs), it is now estimated to be used by around 40% of online adults in the UK.
Live simulcasting of BBC channels joined the iPlayer service in November 2008, and accounted for over 22% of total iPlayer requests on the PC in April 2012 – an 18% annual increase.