The BBC and ITV’s newly announced BritBox – a joint streaming service – is a bizarre example of British broadcasters deciding “to work together in the national interest”, to borrow a phrase currently popular in Westminster.
Facing potentially ruinous competition from US streaming giants, led by Netflix and Amazon Prime, Britain’s oldest broadcasters are trying to claim a Blighty stake in the increasingly global, but largely American-financed, TV market. The venture submerges (if not necessarily suspending) decades of rivalry between the BBC and ITV so intense that both sides keep their schedules secret until the last minute to avoid giving the other any advantage… More here.
I understand why these two broadcasters see the need to do something about the changing ways we consume content, but there are significant problems ahead.
The first two I see are that it will be tiny in comparison to the current big boys and the second is the fact that we in the UK have to pay a licence fee to watch TV and to get the BBC without adverts. So, we pay for the BBC content to be made already so how likely is it that people will want to pay again for the same content?