The BBC has launched a Facebook sports app, marking the first time the public broadcaster has streamed events live through the social network.
A beta version of the app launched in the UK yesterday, offering the BBC’s network coverage of the Wimbledon tennis tournament, along with six extra match streams.
The BBC said the free app would give a “rich social viewing experience,” with viewers able to leave comments under the video as the action unfolds. Live chat is due to be added in time for the Olympics.
Speaking at a Broadcasting Press Guild event earlier this week, the BBC’s director of London 2012, Roger Mosey, said: “We’re working with Facebook on distribution, because we took the view that we should try to get this stuff [BBC sports coverage] out to as many places as possible, and that’s our guiding principle.”
Announcing the app, the general manager of BBC News & Knowledge Phil Fearnley added: “We hope to use it to test the benefits of social viewing, as part of our ambition to deliver more innovative and transformative experiences to sports fans.”
BBC Sport coverage is also available online via the BBC Sport website, is accessible on mobiles, tablets, and connected TVs, and can be viewed via the Red Button. Facebook currently has roughly 30 million monthly active users in the UK.