The BBC today announces it will be launching a simulcast of BBC One in high definition (HD) this Autumn.

 

BBC One HD, which will simulcast a network version of the BBC One schedule for the first time, will see some of the BBC’s most loved programmes including EastEnders, Holby City, The One Show, The Apprentice, The Weakest Link and QI move to HD by the end of the year. They will be broadcast alongside Autumn schedule highlights including Strictly Come Dancing, Human Planet and Waterloo Road.

Plans are also underway for HD moves for Songs Of Praise and Casualty, as well as Match Of The Day, A Question Of Sport, and Blue Peter.

BBC One in HD will be made available to all digital television platforms offering HD channels – Freesat, Freeview, Sky and Virgin Media.

It will be in addition to the existing BBC HD channel, which will showcase the best of the rest of the BBC in HD. It is also announced today that the BBC HD Channel itself will extend its regular broadcast hours over the coming months from around nine hours a day to 12.

The BBC is charged with “delivering to the public the benefit of emerging communications technologies and services” under its Royal Charter. With today’s announcement, the BBC continues its transition to deliver all its programmes in HD, with BBC One leading the way.

Jana Bennett, Director BBC Vision, says: “BBC HD has established itself as the most popular HD service, and these changes are important next steps in improving that service still further, providing an opportunity to showcase the wide variety of BBC programmes in the highest possible quality. We recognise that audiences have already been enjoying many of their favourite programmes in HD, and I’m delighted that we can now broaden their choice.”

Danielle Nagler, Head of BBC HD, says: “HD is the future of television: people who have HD have clearly told us that they want more of their licence fee-funded content in HD. I’m delighted that the HD simulcast of BBC One will become available on satellite, on cable, and now also on Freeview’s new HD service. This is a key moment for us on the journey to HD becoming the norm for all our programmes and channels.

“Audiences have already been enjoying many BBC One programmes in HD on our existing HD channel and the arrival of BBC One simulcast in HD will make it easier for them to find the programmes they love in high definition. BBC HD – the most popular HD channel in the UK – will continue to show programmes from across all BBC channels.”

Jay Hunt, Controller, BBC One, says: “HD is the gold standard for broadcasting, and it’s right that we bring all the excitement of HD to BBC One – the most watched channel in the UK.

“BBC One HD will bring families together for shared viewing of their favourite programmes from EastEnders and Strictly Come Dancing to The One Show, in incredible and vivid detail.”

The Autumn launch is the first stage in delivering BBC One in HD. The majority of programmes in the BBC One network evening schedule will be available in HD at launch, and by 2012 it is expected that the vast majority of all BBC One titles across all hours will be in HD.

The BBC’s existing HD Channel will continue to remain home to the best of the BBC’s programmes from across all its channels, including Top Gear, the Proms, Later… With Jools Holland, The Culture Show, Dragons’ Den, Being Human, Mad Men, sporting programmes including Wimbledon, as well as CBeebies favourites In The Night Garden and ZingZillas.

 

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