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iPlayer: Sign-in required from 2017

UPDATED | A month after it became necessary to be covered by a TV Licence to use the BBC iPlayer, it's been confirmed that from next year, users will be forced to sign-in to use the service.

Anyone who wants to catch-up or watch or listen to a programme live will need to be signed in using a BBC ID from 2017 in what is being seen as a further layer of enforcement following the closure of the iPlayer loophole, that previously allowed non-licence fee payers to access content from the service.

Currently, the use of a BBC ID to access BBC online content is voluntary.

In a further change, from now on, all holders of a BBC ID account will need to add their postcode to their profile. TV licensing will have access to the information, but it won't initially be used to target licence fee evaders, according to the BBC.

The BBC says there are currently 7 million BBC ID accounts in use at the present time. It has distanced itself from claims the changes are to do with the iPlayer loophole closure, emphasising the changes will enable it to offer a more personalised experience to users as part of its "myBBC" scheme.