The BBC Is Shutting Down Its iPlayer Radio App in Favour of BBC Sounds and License Fee Payers Aren't Happy

By Shabana Arif on at

The BBC has managed to piss everyone with its questionable decision to shut down it iPlayer radio app in an attempt at forcefully migrating users to the BBC Sounds app which no one seems to want.

There's a couple of issues here, with the first being that BBC Sounds is riddles with issues and is a bit shit compared to iPlayer radio. It's currently sitting at 2.2/5 stars on Google Play with almost 7,000 reviews. Another bugbear of the already crappy app, is that BBC Sounds is only compatible with new operating systems, and by extension, newer devices, so if you've not been keeping up to date, you're shit out of luck.

In an attempt to smooth things over, the BBC has said that if it wasn't shutting down iPlayer Radio, the app would also have followed suit because it's expensive to support older systems, and not enough people are using it to justify the cost, which is ultimately covered by the people doing the listening via the antiquated licence fees that it insists on forcing on everyone. The spokeperson added that while older devices may not support the app, they can still be used to access it via a web browser, which we can all do with a lot of apps, but prefer not to because this is 2019 and apps are a thing that make using a range of services easier and more efficient to use.

"As a former reporter on Radio 4’s You & Yours, I am aware of the resentment many people have to any industry’s pressure on consumers to constantly upgrade and replace costly devices despite them functioning perfectly well," said former BBC journalist, Rod Macrae.

"The BBC’s decision on the iPlayer radio and Sounds apps will leave hundreds of thousands without access to its services. Sadly, the BBC has sided with the technology industry and ignored its own audience.”

The BBC continued to ignore its audience by harping on about other companies who update their apps to abandon old operating systems, as if that was at all relevant in the face of a vocal backlash from its own license fee payers who are making it abundantly clear that they don't want to be forced to switch to a sub par app or upgrade their devices. So tough shit, is the message here. Let's hope that BBC Sounds gets an overhaul at least as some measure of compromise. [The Guardian]