BBC Three has ended its run as a traditional TV channel and is now officially an online only destination. To celebrate the end of its 13 year run on TV, the channel broadcast some of its most popular shows, including Family Guy and the Mighty Boosh among others. BBC Three will now showcase new and old programming on Youtube and through the official BBC Three platform, known as the Daily Drop.
Started in 2003 to replace BBC Choice with a better service for younger viewers, BBC Three has always aimed at a viewerbase of 16-34 year olds. It’s also fostered new talent and acted as an alternative destination for viewers unhappy with programming on the likes of BBC One and Two.
However with a younger audience comes changing times, and as younger viewers today tend to watch most of their content on-demand and online, BBC Three was considered for the chopping block as part of cost saving measures. It’s thought that it could save upwards of £30 million a year to make the channel online only and there are still many plans for the types of original programming fans are used to.
That didn’t stop them trying to save it though. A petition to stop the transfer raised upwards of 300,000 signatures, but it was largely ignored by the BBC.
Moving forward, many popular past series like Little Britain and Gavin and Stacey will be available in their entirety on demand, much like Netflix and similar services. It will also release around four hours of new, original content per week through the various channels, mixing up short films, documentaries, comedy shows and sports updates.
The new BBC Three ventures will continue to focus on a younger audience, but is largely seen as an experiment by the BBC. With audiences moving more and more towards on-demand programming, if it can cut back on the amount it shows on traditional channels, but maintain a viewing audience, it could well make big savings through online-only platforms.
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KitGuru Says: BBC Three certainly makes sense being an online only destination. The millennial generation it targets (and younger) are far less interested in TV than the generations before them. How much live TV do you spend time watching? Personally, I don’t think I’ve watched anything with adverts for years.