The BBC is developing a tiny digital radio receiver that can be used with existing MP3 players, including iPods.

Plans are at an early stage and no release schedule for the product has been revealed yet, but it appears the BBC wants to attempt to ensure its digital radio transmissions can access as wide a market as possible.

"We have a duty to make sure digital radio is relevant and clearly portable MP3 players are a massive area of growth," a BBC spokesman said.

The broadcaster is engaged now in feasabillity studies for such a device, and is looking at product design and what features the device would need.

The company also dismissed the notion that it would be working with Apple to deliver its solution as "pure speculation".

A report implies the BBC wants to release its device "sooner rather than later".