The BBC is set to take on the likes of Netflix and Amazon with a paid subscription service of its very own. According to The Daily Telegraph, the endeavor — which is supposedly dubbed “Britflix” — could see the BBC partnering with the likes of rival ITV, as well as “a number of production companies” like NBC Universal (which owns Downton Abbey) to launch the service.
Britflix is the most noteworthy inclusion in the BBC’s recently released white paper regarding its long- and short-term future. In the report, the BBC calls for “some form of additional subscription service” while culture secretary John Whittingdale has said that the white paper’s plans, which go into effect next year, will mark the very first time the BBC has been able to charge a fee to those who skip out on cable, but watch the BBC’s programs on its online iPlayer service — thus laying the groundwork for a full-on subscription streaming service. Said Whittingdale to the Telegraph:
We’re moving into a different world where more and more content is going to be made available on demand. Collaboration with other broadcasters and other production companies we think is important. If they want to explore that kind of thing, we’d encourage them. There may come a moment in the future where all television is delivered online, and if you do that it becomes a more realistic, practical possibility if you wanted to move towards an element of voluntary subscription.
Though the project is still believed to be in the early stages of development, it may not be terribly far off and is expected to utilize the aforementioned iPlayer to deliver its content.