BBC try to trump papers with new, free apps

18 February 2010

Bitterwallet - new iPhone contracts

The BBC have announced they’ll be launching free, official mobile apps for iPhone, Blackberry and Google’s Android later in the year, in a move that is certain to annoy other news-carrying organisations. Especially Rupert Murdoch’s News International – which we’re sure you’ll agree is an enormous boon. And we’re always on the look out for enormous boons.

As traditional newspapers struggle to get to grips with a paper-less future, apps are being seen as a new way to direct traffic to their floundering websites, but only if there’s money in it. The Telegraph and Sky already have free apps but with limited content, while The Guardian have launched a paid-for iPhone app, but it costs £2.39 and is somewhat lacking when it comes to usability. The BBC News app could well be a significant kick in the chops for other newspapers with similar paid-for plans.

The News app, due in April will contain content from the BBC News website, including written stories, correspondent blogs as well as audio and video. It’ll be followed up by a BBC Sport app in time for the World Cup, which has got our app glands leaking all over the place.

The Beeb say it’ll focus on football from its launch, with content from the BBC Sport website and 5 Live radio, including live commentary, and, if events are screened live on the BBC Sport site, they’ll also be available to watch through the app.  No plans have been announced for the apps to be available on the most-popular Symbian platforms as yet.

TOPICS:   Mobile   Technology

13 comments

  • andy y.
    That license fee is a bargain
  • Stuart R.
    I think the Guardian's app is extremely usable and has an excellent interface. It has been optimized for speedy delivery of updates and I think your accusation of poor usability is unfounded. Well worth a one off £2.39 for daily updates and fully featured app which is cheaper than buying a quality paper every day. Have you even used it apple fan boys?!
  • Businessman
    What exactly is an app... how is it different from just looking at their website on your phone as normal?
  • Spark
    Shame they're focusing on football first as opposed to something that actually matters.
  • bpdunc
    @businessman It's push v pull - Apps will 'push' appropriate content to users automatically, whereas if you were to access the content yourself by manually going to their website, you would be 'pulling' the information you want yourself. That is the main difference. If your app is customised to show you topics that you are interested in, then it saves you having to wade through other information that doesn't interest you to get to what you want to find.
  • Terrence D.
    What Stuart Said. Guardians app cannot be faulted.
  • Jack T.
    Or the BBC can stop fucking about and tax us less on the licence fee instead. I don't want their shitty nu Labour spin disguised as news. And the guardian would have to pay me to read their filth.
  • Dai
    You are a little charmer aren't you, Jack?
  • Jack T.
    At least I don't force you to pay me for writing my views like the fuck-wits at the bbc.
  • Stuart R.
    Jack, I'm sure if you ask Mr Cameron nicely, he could string together some shit YouTube videos and pass it off as news. And if you're not that way inclined, I hear Nick Griffin is the only literate one in his party. So perhaps he could do a few headlines that are copy and pasted from The Daily Mail. "DON'T GO OUTSIDE! It's full of BLACKS, GAYS and MUSLIMS. ... Oh if only Diana was still alive."
  • OMFG
    Stuart get back to work writing scripts for the BBC and show us your ignorance. Gordon Brown needs you!
  • James
    Don't you get it Stuart. The BBC is just a big conspiracy to keep Gordon Brown in power. Everything they do is biased and with ulterior motives, blah blah blah. Jack stop enjoying your dss and access to broadband and get back to your anit-capitalist protests, they need you.
  • tin
    CRACKING. Brown loving ignorant fuckwits or no, I'm 100% for anything that pisses on Murdoch's bonfire. Bring on the Guardian AND the BBC apps.

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