VOD service to embrace social media

LONDON — The U.K.’s hugely successful video-on-demand service, the BBC iPlayer, is embracing social media.

A new beta version of the iPlayer, launched Wednesday, enables users to customize the device, tailoring the service to their individual preferences, and share content via Facebook and Twitter.

In the coming weeks it will also link to other U.K. VOD services including the on-demand sites of rivals ITV, Channel 4 and Five, and launch a new feature allowing users to chat to friends.

The BBC’s future media and technology director Erik Huggers said: “The launch of this version of the BBC iPlayer is part of our strategy to do fewer things even better and make it more simple, personal and connected.”

He added: “I can’t emphasise the importance of good design enough. In an age of unlimited choice — our audiences need better ways to find what they are looking for, and it is this thinking that we’ve brought into BBC iPlayer.”

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