BBC: Red Button and EPG key to marrying online and broadcast

Roly Keating - speaking at the DTG
Roly Keating - speaking at the DTG

The BBC believes that the EPG and the broadcaster's red button service are key to bringing combined web and broadcast content seamlessly to UK homes.

Roly Keating, BBC director of archive content and executive editor of online, spoke at the DTG summit in London this week and explained that the current familiar infrastructure of an EPG and the BBC Red Button could well be the best gateway to online.

"We would love this web revolution to be based around habits that already exist – the EPG, the red button," said Keating.

"Instinctively it feels like connectivity will strengthen things like the Red Button, and the EPG should be the gateway to this connected world.

"Pressing the red button to open a window into a richer field of BBC Online content is what we want.

"Not just content from the BBC iPlayer, but also the other online content from our rich archive."

Dynamic bridge

Keating admitted that the red button still has limitations, and he believes this is because the BBC has been working on the web and broadcast as separate entities, something that will soon change.

"At the moment the BBC red button is pretty limited, we need to bring our skillsets together

"The purpose here is to reinvent many aspects of the TV, but this will mainly revolve around pressing the red button. We have a key sense from experience about what this should entail.

"If a child is watching Shaun The Sheep, then they should be able to play the Shaun The Sheep game from this screen.

"We need to make it a dynamic bridge that responds to the channel and programme you are watching."

Marc Chacksfield

Marc Chacksfield is the Editor In Chief, at DC Thomson. He started out life as a movie writer for numerous (now defunct) magazines and soon found himself online - editing a gaggle of gadget sites, including TechRadar, Digital Camera World and Tom's Guide UK. At Shortlist you'll find him mostly writing about movies and tech, so no change there then.