The BBC is indeed launching an iPlayer Radio, a separate service, but it isn't as spectacular as some of the rumors would have made it seem. The media company is simply splitting radio programming and TV programming and providing two services and two sets of apps to access them.
The content itself will remain the same, there's nothing being added or taken away. Some rumors said that the BBC was looking at building a streaming service, in partnership with an existing streaming provider like Spotify or Deezer.
Those plans may still be in the works, but there's nothing official now. Radio content used to be served via the regular iPlayer.
Unlike TV programming though, most people listened to live radio on the web or via the apps, only 10 percent listened to recorded programs, in stark contrast to TV.
The BBC wants to better emphasize radio content, but this also means that users will have to install two apps on their phones or tablets if they want both TV and radio from BBC. Radio content, as before, works internationally though, for free, the TV content is only available in the UK.
"Today we've launched BBC iPlayer Radio. It brings together iPlayer and the radio station sites to create a new BBC home for radio within iPlayer across PC, mobile and tablet," Mark Friend, controller of multiplatform and interactive for the BBC's Audio & Music division, wrote
For now, the move seems to be more of a hassle for people, but the goal is to move BBC radio stations towards becoming "multimedia brands." In fact, the BBC is hinting at more changes for the iPlayer Radio, talking about its "vast audio archive" and music discovery.
If that sounds like on-demand streaming, it's probably because it is. Rumors have been saying that the company wants to put its historic music recordings
online for on-demand listening.
The BBC will be supplementing that with music from providers like Spotify, Deezer and so on. That's what it's hinting at in its blog post, so it seems more than plausible.