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BBC Select Now Available Through Apple TV Channels

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Apr 12, 2001
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BBC Select, a new streamer for factual programming in the U.S. and Canada, is the latest video subscription service to arrive through Apple TV Channels.



BBC Select offers curated non-fiction and factual programming, spotlighting culture, politics, and ideas through a candid, unbiased, and sometimes playful lens.

Shows available on the new channel include the acclaimed documentary series "The Rise of the Murdoch Dynasty," Aung San Suu Kyi documentary "The Fall of an Icon," and the films of Turner Prize-winning artist Grayson Perry and documentary presenter Louis Theroux.

BBC Select joins the BBC's portfolio of existing streaming services that includes BBC Earth, BBC Brit, BBC First, and BritBox. The new service is effectively analogous to an international wing of the terrestrial TV channel BBC Four in the UK, which focuses on the arts, documentaries, and current affairs.

Apple introduced the Channels feature in early 2019, providing a way for ‌Apple TV‌ users to subscribe to standalone services directly in the TV app. There is a growing selection of Channels available, including CBS All Access, Showtime, Epix, Starz, Cinemax, AMC+, and more.

BBC Select is available now in the U.S. and Canada via the Apple TV app and Amazon Prime Video for $4.99 per month.

Article Link: BBC Select Now Available Through Apple TV Channels
 

jsamuelson

macrumors regular
Sep 12, 2008
109
25
Switzerland
Those commenting above don’t seem to know how the BBC is funded.
Every penny from international sales will come back to the BBC and be used for producing new content.

I fully understand how the BBC is funded.

Overseas sales are negligible, frankly.

£3.5 billion in mandatory licence fees from the British taxpayer per annum, for which there are criminal charges if you don't pay...

Roughly £100 million in profit from international sales.

Explain to me again who should be getting the latest and greatest features first?
 
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KrisLord

macrumors 68000
Sep 12, 2008
1,585
1,199
Northumberland, UK
I fully understand how the BBC is funded.

Overseas sales are negligible, frankly.

£3.5 billion in mandatory licence fees from the British taxpayer per annum, for which there are criminal charges if you don't pay...

Roughly £100 million in profit from international sales.

Explain to me again who should be getting the latest and greatest features first?

We do get the latest and greatest first, the stuff we flog internationally is generally stuff that was originally made for the UK audience.

If these sales didn’t happen, then the original cost of production would have still been incurred, it just would have all been covered by the license fee.

I get you don’t like the license fee, but not selling stuff abroad because of it is an odd way of running the BBC.
 
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Kevrani

macrumors newbie
Nov 15, 2007
29
13
Dublin, Ireland
As for those citing the UK licence fee, none of the BBC's international services receive any funding from the UK public, which is precisely the reason you can't receive said services in the UK. As mentioned above, the profits from the international services are used to ploughed back in the UK service.
 
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LV426

macrumors 65816
Jan 22, 2013
1,084
634
So it appears the BBC can produce a subscription service. They have done themselves no favours here with regards to domestic funding of the BBC.

Good news for those who oppose the TV licence fee.
The BBC have been providing a subscription service for some time, with other content producers, in the form of BritBox.

As for the license fee, it’s extraordinarily good value for money. Because economies of scale and 20M households chipping in. And a long history of public service broadcasting.

Whilst the BBC does churn out the occasional stinker (like Mrs Brown’s Boys, which is really educational material for the hard of thinking) it creates a great deal of high quality content. I honestly lost track of the number of times I’ve spent an eternity skimming through Netflix & Amazon to find something decent to watch. They, of course, do have the occasional gems. But if I see a red ‘N’ symbol at the upper left of a movie, I know I’m in for a disappointment.
 
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jsamuelson

macrumors regular
Sep 12, 2008
109
25
Switzerland
We do get the latest and greatest first, the stuff we flog internationally is generally stuff that was originally made for the UK audience.

If these sales didn’t happen, then the original cost of production would have still been incurred, it just would have all been covered by the license fee.

I get you don’t like the license fee, but not selling stuff abroad because of it is an odd way of running the BBC.

£157.50/12=£13.13 per month for a person watching any kind of media in the UK. I think they calculate per "household" so the numbers look better.

Obligatory. Whether you watch BBC or not.

Then they have taken certain programming OFF iPlayer after 12 months and moved it to BritBox, for which you have to pay another £5.99.

The original costs of production are almost wholly covered by the license fee, correct, so why does BBC Studios have revenue of £1.4 billion and return only £200 million or so of that to the BBC proper as its "profit"?

So cost of sales (distribution etc) was, simplistically, over a BILLION pounds? It's completely nuts. And they do their very best to hide the detail in their accounts across their various subsidiaries.

It's opaque, confusing and unacceptable for a publicly funded entity.

I like much of the BBC's content. I don't like their news anymore, as it seems op-ed rather than factual half the time.

I would pay for it, probably. But I absolutely don't like being compelled to.
 
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jsamuelson

macrumors regular
Sep 12, 2008
109
25
Switzerland
As for those citing the UK licence fee, none of the BBC's international services receive any funding from the UK public, which is precisely the reason you can't receive said services in the UK. As mentioned above, the profits from the international services are used to ploughed back in the UK service.
Say what again? Almost ALL of the programming sold abroad has already been funded by the license fee, with the odd exception here and there where they have created a genuine partnership to produce something collaboratively (which is itself still funded out of sales of existing programming).
 
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apparatchik

macrumors 6502
Mar 6, 2008
313
779
If I were a Briton, I would say the BBC, whatever fair criticism towards its content or financing model you might have, is a powerful resource of soft power, and allows Britain to punch above its weight-class, as a Mexican I enjoy very much some of its programming, they broadcast a different view of the world, and re-sell content to public tv channels all-around the world.

This is of course if you have some sense of cultural and strategic meaning, some British values and take on things deserve to be heard, enjoy or have fun with. Some people of course -and in their own right- might prefer to keep isolating themselves and become European Singapur. "Not with my money", etc.

I personally applaud its overseas availability and look with envy the greatest public TV Network in the world and its imperfect but meaningful model and how it gives back to its payers dare I to say a lot more than they give initially.

Remember that the money is spent on British job: directors, actors, designers, etc. This is money that goes right back to keep creators and content-producing Britons working. Better than spent in weapons, and more effective.
 
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kiranmk2

macrumors 6502a
Oct 4, 2008
951
562
I love the BBC. I find the news very balanced and my main criticism is that the journalists don't really investigate the details (so everything almost comes across as a press release) - but that is a criticism of most news outlets.

They also admit mistakes after investigations.

Personally I think the BBC represents excellent value for money. Think how much of your life you spend watch commercials on ITV/Channel 4 etc. They are also helping push the technology forward (they were behind the HLG HDR standard). Yes, they do annoying things (like abandoning TuneIn on Echo devices and all the issues that has caused) but then so do most companies.

The non-fiction programming which this story covers are almost worth the cost themselves! Think Blue Planet, Planet Earth, Charlie Brooker (before he jumped ship), Adam Curtis and the list goes on.
 
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cecil444

macrumors regular
Mar 9, 2008
118
159
NY
There is a growing selection of Channels available
Growing *and* shrinking; the selection has been flat for the past year — seems with every new channel they add, another one disappears. By my count they’ve lost five channels already: HBO, Smithsonian+, MTV Hits, Comedy Central Now, and Arrow Video Channel.

Personally I love the convenience of Apple TV Channels but with all the other streaming options available, there aren’t many I’d subscribe to for more than a month or two.
 
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jsamuelson

macrumors regular
Sep 12, 2008
109
25
Switzerland
If I were a Briton, I would say the BBC, whatever fair criticism towards its content or financing model you might have, is a powerful resource of soft power, and allows Britain to punch above its weight-class, as a Mexican I enjoy very much some of its programming, they broadcast a different view of the world, and re-sell content to public tv channels all-around the world.

This is of course if you have some sense of cultural and strategic meaning, some British values and take on things deserve to be heard, enjoy or have fun with. Some people of course -and in their own right- might prefer to keep isolating themselves and become European Singapur. "Not with my money", etc.

I personally applaud its overseas availability and look with envy the greatest public TV Network in the world and its imperfect but meaningful model and how it gives back to its payers dare I to say a lot more than they give initially.

Remember that the money is spent on British job: directors, actors, designers, etc. This is money that goes right back to keep creators and content-producing Britons working. Better than spent in weapons, and more effective.

Soft power plays should be funded by the FCDO’s budget, not the license fee. Otherwise great points.
 
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Kevrani

macrumors newbie
Nov 15, 2007
29
13
Dublin, Ireland
Say what again? Almost ALL of the programming sold abroad has already been funded by the license fee, with the odd exception here and there where they have created a genuine partnership to produce something collaboratively (which is itself still funded out of sales of existing programming).
Funding and programming are not the same thing.
 
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NightFox

macrumors 68020
May 10, 2005
2,435
2,040
Shropshire, UK
Whatever your views of the BBC or your perception of it's politics, don't for one moment take its output for granted. It's easy to (rightfully) criticise some of the quality of that, but do that in context - compare it to the output of other broadcasters, especially in other countries. And don't just look at that content from a personal point of view, more about how it serves the interests of a wider (and sometimes niche) audience. That's something you can only afford to do if you're not chasing viewing figures for your very existence.
 
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ajfahey

macrumors 6502
Jun 28, 2001
319
394
Moorpark, CA
Simply put, UK taxpayers subsidising international streaming clients. And it's not even available via Apple TV Channels in the UK...
Then the solution to your missive is simple. Prevent the BBC from selling their programming overseas if you don’t believe that the additional profit money that they collect from it, however big or small, is worth the trouble. In return, we here in the states can shut down the supply of medical technology and pharmacology that our companies sell the good people in the UK at a fraction of the cost that we in the US pay for it. Sound fair to you?

Your argument against overseas programming sales clearly isn’t so much simple as it is simplistic.
 
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The-Real-Deal82

macrumors G4
Jan 17, 2013
10,969
16,853
Wales, United Kingdom
As for those citing the UK licence fee, none of the BBC's international services receive any funding from the UK public, which is precisely the reason you can't receive said services in the UK. As mentioned above, the profits from the international services are used to ploughed back in the UK service.
Apart from when joint projects the BBC has been involved in have aired overseas before the UK rather than at the same time. Killing Eve is one example where there was a 3-4 week delay and people in the UK were forced to download it illegally as it was being spoilt all over social media. Another example is when the BBC only had partial F1 coverage, yet the full BBC coverage was being shown in other countries. My parents have stopped paying their license fee and I’m considering it as I recently took a BBC survey where I admitted I rarely watch it anymore. Commercial channels and subscription services like Netflix are becoming popular enough to threaten what used to be a very good service on the BBC.
 
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tyr2

macrumors 6502a
May 6, 2006
811
115
Leeds, UK
Interesting to see this launched under the BBC Select brand. It was originally a service in the early 90’s that broadcast specialist content in the small hours of the morning when BBC1/2 were off air.

The content was scrambled and you needed a decoder to watch it, and presumably a VCR as well!

 
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macford

macrumors member
Sep 5, 2007
47
110
I'm a big fan of a lot of BBC programming and have said for years that I would gladly pay the licensing fee if I could only watch the channel here in the US. Paying for a streaming service of "select features" or watching BBC America is not the same thing as having access to the full BBC. I'm sure there are licensing restrictions that prevent this but I would much rather just pay what the British pay, even more if necessary, to be able to access all of the BBC. Yes, I know I can do it through VPN but it would be nice to support the full weight of the BBC and not gets little snippets via things like BritBox or this new streaming service.
 
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