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BBC “streamlines” online services to help it compete better against Netflix and Amazon

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The BBC is to reduce its online services as it steps up its fight against US streaming services like Netflix, according to reports.

The corporation is to concentrate on eight key areas including iPlayer, news, music and spoken word, weather, sport, children’s content, BBC Bitesize and the bbc.co.uk homepage.

It said it will as a result become “more streamlined and focused” and will help it to “strengthen the core – like iPlayer – while reducing fragmentation so that the BBC is better able to compete against the big technological giants”.

The BBC Earth and BBC Arts sections of the website are set to be removed and there will be less focus on celebrity gossip.

BBC director general Tony Hall told staff yesterday: “In the global market, against well-resourced competitors, we have to concentrate on a smaller number of services that deliver our best content online.”

The BBC is also improving its offering to young people and in March announced it was launching a new children’s app. It has also set itself a new weeklyonline reach target with younger audiences of 90% within four years (currently 55%). 

It will also do more to go after fake news and misinformation online, something it says is having a “corrosive impact on public debate”.

A BBC source added: “We are already evolving BBC iPlayer to reflect changing patterns of consumption and to ensure we give the public what they want. iPlayer set the gold standard which others have followed. We need to leap ahead once more.”

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