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BBC begins Connected Red Button roll-out on selected Freeview Smart TVs

The BBC has launched a beta version of its new Connected Red Button service on selected Sony Freeview smart TVs, with further devices to follow shortly.

It will run side-by-side with the existing Red Button service to allow viewers to try the new service out while it is being tested and refined.

The service, which was first piloted on Virgin Media's Tivo platform, allows viewers to access extra content via the red button and through their internet connection. This includes extra streams of music and sport during major events such as Glastonbury and Wimbledon.

Freeview viewers were previously restricted in what they could access via the traditional red button service delivered via their aerial, with the service being cut to one stream following a reorganisation of terrestrial bandwidth to accommodate HD channels in late 2009.

Jennifer Lyons, Product Manager for the Connected Red Button said on the BBC internet blog that "this new service will run alongside the existing Red Button service during its ‘beta period’, giving viewers a chance to try the new service whilst it is tested and refined."

"The Connected Red Button is being launched as a beta service on supported Sony Smart TVs, with Samsung and LG Smart TVs launching later. Viewers will be able to try the new service, gain familiarity and provide feedback that we can potentially incorporate into the product as we continue development. They can do this while continuing to use the existing Red Button service as usual. More devices and platforms will be added in 2014."

"The Connected Red Button is built using HTML and JavaScript and supports standards-based browsers and streaming technologies. It uses a modular, scalable, shared (with Connected Red Button on Virgin TiVo) architecture that enables us to easily add features, modify sections or bring new TV platforms on board. We continue to work closely with the industry to bring Connected Red Button to a broad range of TVs, devices and platforms."
What’s on the Connected Red Button?
Links to 10 featured iPlayer programmes and a link to the rest of iPlayer via the iPlayer button.

Read or watch the latest news headlines.
Read or watch the latest sports news and highlights.
5 day forecast for your location.
Links to iPlayer content for children.

The BBC's approach to connected "red button" services differs to those of commercial operators on Freeview. Arqiva's Connect TV offers extra content via the red button on connected TV devices via Freeview channels 18, 35 and 85, with access to extra music, shopping and documentary channels. This extra content is also accessible on some non-Smart Freeview HD devices (mostly 2012 or later models).

Devices that the BBC's Connected Red Button service will run on: Full List  >
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