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BBC and ISPs lock horns over iPlayer and broadband networks

BBC and ISPs lock horns over iPlayer and broadband networksNews brought to you by Skint Tariffs, providers of cheap broadband deals.

People viewing BBC news coverage through the corporation's online on-demand TV service are putting an extra burden on national networks, which operators want the BBC to pay for.

Internet service providers have asked the BBC to pay for network costs which have resulted from the national television broadcaster's release of its own online viewer, the iPlayer.

Using the iPlayer, viewers can stream programmes from the BBC site to their computer, a service which over one million users have taken advantage of to download 3.5 million programmes in the month since the service was launched.

Telecoms regulator Ofcom has estimated that ISPs will incur costs of about £830 million to provide the capacity needed to support services like the iPlayer.

The BBC's head of future media and technology said that the ISPs should shoulder the extra costs.

He told the BBC's Today programme that the iPlayer benefitted the providers, saying: "The success of the iPlayer should be of benefit to the whole UK broadband industry, increasing those who want to take up broadband.

"It may be putting extra strain on the network but it would be a bit odd for the BBC to fund such an upgrade."

However, Tiscali's Simon Gunter said the BBC should contribute towards paying for upgrades.


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