bbcChanges to the way the BBC streams its internet radio stations have left many listeners unable to tune in on their devices.
This has especially been the case for those who listen through Internet (Wifi) radios.

The BBC has responded to criticism of the way it handled changes to its internet radio streams in a series of blogs on the Corporation’s website. One result of the outcry is that Radio 3 HD at 320kbps has been re-enabled on SHOUTcast.

Jim Simmons, senior product manager at the BBC, says: “It is clear from your feedback that the fallback choice for SHOUTcast (MP3) has fallen short in a number of areas. We have been working over the past week on some of the technical solutions required to improve the situation and I am happy to say that we have now re-enabled Radio 3 HD Sound on SHOUTcast.

“We are still talking to manufacturers and many are confident that they will be able to provide their users with access to all 57 of our HLS AAC streams at 320kbps within a few weeks or months. We will review the status of this 320kbps SHOUTcast stream again in a few months time and we will update you on progress via the internet blog.”

In a separate blog, the BBC’s Head of Media Services, Henry Webster, addresses the problem of Radio 5 listeners being unable to hear some sports broadcasts. “Users whose devices can only receive the SHOUTcast stream (MP3) and not one of the new HLS streaming formats will hear a version of the stream which will blank sport where the BBC does not hold international rights.
The new HLS streams are available in both UK and international variants, which allows those in the UK to continue to enjoy the Sport that we broadcast as usual. We are investigating to see whether there is anything we can do to return access to the UK streams for those who are affected by this.”

Sonos owners, among others, have been affected by this as Sonos uses TuneIn for its internet radio streaming service and this does not currently support the new BBC streams. Sonos says it is “working to add support for the new HLS streams. We don’t have a timeline or ETA to share right now, as we are still in the process of investigating the details of the implementation, but as soon as we have more news we’ll share it on our website.”

Webster also admits that many Logitech Squeezebox owners have expressed their frustration at the impact of the changes, but says the BBC is working with Logitech to resolve the problem.

Naim equipment has also been affected by the “shock changes” and the company has issued a detailed statement on the issue which you can read at the end of this story.

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By Expat