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BBC confirms download service to rival iTunes

Isn't a second licence fee says director general

The BBC’s rumoured download service named Project Barcelona has been announced by BBC director general Mark Thompson.

As we reported earlier this week the service will allow users to purchase content to download and watch from the archive. Thompson said that programmes will be available for "relatively modest" fee. The leaked information from earlier this week suggested prices around £1.89.

The plans for Project Barcelona will be put before the BBC Trust later this year. The scheme will require the support of producers to go ahead. The BBC is supposedly planning to pay producers a better share of the money compared to iTunes.

The BBC offers its TV and radio shows for free via the iPlayer for seven days after being broadcast with some entire series available. The new ‘digital shop’ will be the equivalent of customers buying a DVD in shop, according to Thompson, with some content not previously available to own.

Customers might not be too happy with paying for content on top of the annual licence fee. However, Thompson denied that the scheme is a "second licence fee by stealth".


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