ABC’s iView coming to an iPad near you

The ABC has flagged it will ramp up its iView catch up TV service, expanding content and the number of platforms the service runs on.

In a speech at the Commonwealth Broadcasting Association Conference 2010, ABC managing director Mark Scott said the move had been prompted by a 400 per cent increase in usage of the service last year.

“…We have a project underway to try and deliver iView to audiences on their television sets and devices like the iPad,” he said.

The announcement follows a record viewer response to the ABC’s debut airing of the new series of Doctor Who on the iView service.

The show, screened online at midnight on Friday, resulted in more than 112,000 views over the weekend and the biggest boost to viewer numbers to date for the service with a total of 224,000 visitors, 540,000 visits and 2.8 million page views for the week ending 18 April.

In an ABC Television official blog post, director of television Kim Dalton said that the response proved the domestic demand for online TV.

“The response we’ve had to the Doctor Who premiere makes it very clear that Australians want to watch television episodes on their computers and game consoles,” Kim Dalton said. “We’ll be looking to offer more special programming on iView…”

iView currently has more than 175 programs available from ABC1, ABC2 and ABC3 channels. In March, the service recorded 471,000 visitors and 1.671 million visits.

The ABC has been aggressively ramping up its iView service of late, announcing earlier this month that it would extend its distribution agreement with Sony and allow the service to be available via Sony’s Bravia TVs and Blu-ray players.

The service was made available through Sony’s PS3 gaming console in November last year.

Computerworld Australia is seeking further details from the ABC.

Apple Australia declined to comment on the project.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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