50 stations from the BBC and commercial operators at launch

UK Radioplayer service to launch in December

The collaboration between the BBC and commercial media companies to provide Internet streamed radio services is due to launch in December.

The UK Radioplayer network was announced last year with BBC audio and music director Tim Davie saying: "This is a really exciting development and a result of focused, collaborative thinking within the radio industry. The aim of this service is to grow listening across the industry and help preserve radio’s unique position."

While 70 per cent of British homes have broadband, only around 2 per cent use the Internet for listening g to radio and with the situation failing to improve, the BBC and commercial operators intend the site to be an easy one stop shop for tuning in to radio over the Internet. The aim of the new service is to combat findings that Internet radio is seen as "complex, inconsistent, and fragmented."

The new service wont actually serve the streams, it will leave that to the broadcasters, but rather provide a common location to access radio stations. In doing so the BBC and commercial partners have agreed on common standards such as the size and shape of pop-up Radioplayer windows.

50 channels will be available at the initial launch with many more later. The BBC also recently announced a ‘HD’ radio service which would initially aim to provide a high quality stream for Radio 3.

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