Longer exposure: watch programmes on BBC iPlayer up to 30 days after broadcast (and maybe even beforehand)

But Director General Tony Hall also tells staff to find £100m-a-year savings to fund improvements

Media Editor

The BBC's iPlayer is to extend its broadcast window from seven days to 30 and allow viewers to watch shows in advance of the schedule in transformational plans announced by Lord Hall, the Director General of the BBC.

Lord Hall outlined a new "personal BBC" where the broadcaster uses iPlayer to monitor the interests of its viewers and offers bespoke schedules - but he has told staff to find £100m-a-year in savings to fund his ambitions, which include a host of new technology features.

The Director General is seeking to fundamentally change the relationship between the BBC and its audience in the lead up to difficult negotiations on the future funding of the organisation in the wake of public upset over the Jimmy Savile and executive pay-off scandals.

During an address titled "Where Next?", Lord Hall said he wanted the BBC to cast off its "paternalist" attitude. "At the moment we treat audiences like licence fee payers. We should be treating them like owners," he said, expressing a desire that viewers would talk not of the BBC "but my BBC, our BBC".

In a landmark address six months after taking up his post, Lord Hall identified music as a key strength of the BBC and said Radio 1 would be given a position on iPlayer to encourage its growth as a visual network. He said the BBC will partner with Google's YouTube and the music streaming sites Spotify and Deezer to offer a new service called Playlister, where listeners will be able to tag any BBC radio tracks they hear and play them later on any digital device.

BBC radio's speech output will be collated into a new service called Open Minds as a "home of intelligent content for curious people" that can be listened to outside of the linear schedule. An online shop, BBC Store, will enable audiences to download BBC classics and own them permanently.

All of these offerings are an attempt to win back confidence in the BBC after an unexpectedly traumatic opening six months for Lord Hall. The former chief executive of the Royal Opera House has struggled to make his mark on an organisation that has been beset by continuing allegations of sex abuse against former members of staff, and scandals over wasteful spending on executive redundancy payments and flawed IT projects.

Although he was attempting to strike a positive note, the Director General showed contrition as he attempted to show that he did not take the public's support for granted. "To be given the right to be funded by a licence fee is a tremendous privilege," he said. In a reference to the embarrassment he felt over the "very serious failure" of generous pay-offs given to departing executives from a previous BBC regime, he said: "I want to ensure that when we do make mistakes they are caused by trying to serve our viewers, not by looking after ourselves."

As the BBC's output is increasingly accessed online and as the internet supports a seemingly limitless wealth of free content, the organisation faces a battle to convince younger viewers - many of whom are not watching on television - of the validity of the £145.50 annual licence fee, which they are still obliged to pay for watching live broadcasts on mobiles and tablets. Lord Hall said: "We'll make sure that everyone who should be paying the licence fee is."

In an attempt to get public support in new licence fee negotiations which will begin soon after the 2015 election, the BBC will try to give viewers the sense that they are receiving an individual service. "Audiences will be invited to sign in - they will get personalised recommendations," said Hall. "They'll be able to rate our programmes, to discuss, participate and vote. That will influence what we commission, when we schedule, how we run the BBC. They can become their own schedulers, our next creators, our future innovators."

BBC sources said the use of its websites could also be used to gather information on a user's likely programme tastes - but that the broadcaster aimed for a "gold standard" service in terms of privacy and personal data storage because it was motivated not by commercial factors but by providing the best possible user experience.

Emphasising the need for the BBC to be at the forefront of technological innovation, the Director General said a modern toddler regarded a magazine as "a tablet that's bust", while a contemporary teenager valued a mobile more than a radio or television set. Lord Hall, 62, said little about older audiences. He set out plans to help schools in teaching computer coding from 2015. In 2016, the BBC will mark the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare by making its archive of the Bard's plays and poems available to schools.

He outlined his ambitions in the arts, including a new BBC Music Awards, and demanded that BBC News doubles its global audience to half a billion by 2022. The latter target is likely to alarm commercial British news organisations that are trying to grow international online traffic. Similarly the music awards will worry existing events in the busy entertainment awards calendar.

Funding all this, Lord Hall admitted would be hard. The 16 per cent cuts resulting from the existing Delivering Quality First savings programme are likely to be exceeded by a further 4 per cent. "But we'll have to find more again to do everything I've outlined today," he said. "Up to another £100 million a year." While BBC audiences might be encouraged by Lord Hall's vision, its price will give new concern to the organisation's staff.   

WHY CHANGE iPLAYER?

The iPlayer was celebrated by Lord Hall yesterday as the finest service of its kind in the world - but he said the public was enjoying a "golden age of media" and was hungry for even more flexibility. The Director General said yesterday that 40 per cent of iPlayer requests now come from mobile.

HOW DO THE CHANGES WORK?

Just as viewers want shows where they want, so they want them when they want - the schedule is increasingly irrelevant. So the BBC is widening the viewing window from seven to 30 days and allowing early adopters to watch shows before their scheduled broadcast (knowing they are likely to provide some helpful publicity by discussing them on social media).

IS THIS JUST ABOUT TELEVISION?

iPlayer will also feature video content from Radio 1 - reflecting that network's increasingly visual identity - and the BBC is launching a service called Playlister allowing users to tag songs they hear on BBC Radio and listen to them later on their favourite music streaming platforms. For those seeking "intelligent content" from speech radio networks, the BBC is packaging them into a new service called Open Minds, to be available on app and iPlayer.

Arts & Entertainment
TV

Arts & Entertainment
Customers browse through Vinyl Junkies record shop in Berwick Street, Soho, London
music

Arts & Entertainment
Who laughs lass: Jenny Collier on stage
ComedyCollier was once told there were "too many women" on bill
Arts & Entertainment
Ian Anderson, the leader of British rock band Jethro Tull, (right) and British guitar player Martin Barre (left) perform on stage
music

VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Arts & Entertainment
Don (John Hamm) and Megan (Jessica Paré) Draper are going their separate ways in the final series of ‘Mad Men’
tvReview: The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge
Arts & Entertainment
James Franco and Chris O'Dowd in Of Mice and Men on Broadway
theatre

Review: Of Mice and Men

Arts & Entertainment
art

By opportunistic local hoping to exhibit the work

Arts & Entertainment
Leonardo DiCaprio will star in an adaptation of Michael Punke's thriller 'The Revenant'
film

Fans will be hoping the role finally wins him an Oscar

Arts & Entertainment
Cody and Paul Walker pictured in 2003.
film

Arts & Entertainment
Down to earth: Fern Britton presents 'The Big Allotment Challenge'
TV

Arts & Entertainment
The London Mozart Players is the longest-running chamber orchestra in the UK
musicThreatened orchestra plays on, managed by its own members
Arts & Entertainment
Seeing red: James Dean with Sal Mineo in 'Rebel without a Cause'
film

Arts & Entertainment
TV
Arts & Entertainment
Heads up: Andy Scott's The Kelpies in Falkirk
art

What do gigantic horse heads tell us about Falkirk?

Arts & Entertainment
artGraffiti legend posts picture of work – but no one knows where it is
Arts & Entertainment
A close-up of Tom of Finland's new Finnish stamp
art

Finnish Postal Service praises the 'self irony and humour' of the drawings

Arts & Entertainment
Pierce Brosnan as James Bond in 2002's Die Another Day
film

The actor has confessed to his own insecurities

Life & Style
Green fingers: a plot in East London
TV

Allotments are the focus of a new reality show

Arts & Entertainment
Myleene Klass attends the Olivier awards 2014

Oliviers 2014Theatre stars arrive at Britain's most prestigious theatre awards
Arts & Entertainment
Stars of The Book of Mormon by Trey Parker and Matt Stone of South Park

Oliviers 2014Blockbuster picked up Best Musical and Best Actor in a Musical
Arts & Entertainment
Lesley Manville with her Olivier for Best Actress for her role in 'Ghosts'

Oliviers 2014Actress thanked director Richard Eyre for a stunning production
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe: Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC

    How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe

    Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC
    Video of British Muslims dancing to Pharrell Williams's hit Happy attacked as 'sinful'

    British Muslims's Happy video attacked as 'sinful'

    The four-minute clip by Honesty Policy has had more than 300,000 hits on YouTube
    Church of England-raised Michael Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith

    Michael Williams: Do as I do, not as I pray

    Church of England-raised Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith
    A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife

    A History of the First World War in 100 moments

    A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife
    Comedian Jenny Collier: 'Sexism I experienced on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

    Jenny Collier: 'Sexism on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

    The comedian's appearance at a show on the eve of International Women's Day was cancelled because they had "too many women" on the bill
    Cannes Film Festival: Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or

    Cannes Film Festival

    Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or
    The concept album makes surprise top ten return with neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson

    The concept album makes surprise top ten return

    Neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson is unexpected success
    Lichen is the surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus, thanks to our love of Scandinavian and Indian cuisines

    Lichen is surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus

    Emily Jupp discovers how it can give a unique, smoky flavour to our cooking
    10 best baking books

    10 best baking books

    Planning a spot of baking this bank holiday weekend? From old favourites to new releases, here’s ten cookbooks for you
    Jury still out on Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini

    Jury still out on Pellegrini

    Draw with Sunderland raises questions over Manchester City manager's ability to motivate and unify his players
    Ben Stokes: 'Punching lockers isn't way forward'

    Ben Stokes: 'Punching lockers isn't way forward'

    The all-rounder has been hailed as future star after Ashes debut but incident in Caribbean added to doubts about discipline. Jon Culley meets a man looking to control his emotions
    Mark Johnston: First £1 million jackpot spurs him on

    Mark Johnston: First £1 million jackpot spurs him on

    The most prize money ever at an All-Weather race day is up for grabs at Lingfield on Friday, and the record-breaking trainer tells Jon Freeman how times have changed
    Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail. If you think it's awful, then just don't watch it'

    Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail'

    As the second series of his divisive sitcom 'Derek' hits screens, the comedian tells James Rampton why he'll never bow to the critics who habitually circle his work
    Mad Men series 7, TV review: The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge

    Mad Men returns for a final fling

    The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge
    Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground as there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit

    Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground

    Technology giant’s scientists say there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit