iview, online, mobile remain ABC priority.

2014-11-20_0229As ABC looks at where it will make savings on its $254m funding cuts and how many jobs will go, iview, online and mobile content remain a priority.

At the Screen Forever conference earlier this week, ABC Managing Director Mark Scott said the broadcaster needed to invest in iview as more Australians turned to online platforms.

“One of our big priorities will be around investment in iview. iview is vital to our future. iview has had tremendous audience response and we need to continue to reinvest (in it),” he said.

“We think it can do more. Effectively we think of it as a channel in its own right, not just for catch-up services but as a destination.

“I think there are key sections of our audience for whom the schedule is a bewildering anachronism.’What do you mean I can only watch that programme at that time?'” he asked.

“The thing that our children and grandchildren will be most surprised by is the fact that you had to wait to watch a show.

“The fact that we showed something like The Code, which was fantastic, but had a cliffhanger. And we said ‘You just sit there and wait 167 hours to watch the next episode.’

“We need to continue to invest in iview to meet audience expectations.

“Unapologetically, iview is a priority.”

Scott said investment was needed not just in technical requirements but in original content. But if funding cuts were severe “then of course there is a content impact” across the broadcaster.

“Of course it’s easy to just pull the plug on content, but that’s exactly what we’re not doing. I can tell you there are more 40 different cost-cutting projects in support services alone,” he said.

“We’re not new to this. News 24 was created entirely through efficiencies. iview was created through efficiencies. Our host of online was created through efficiencies. We’re not new to the efficiency business.”

He also said ABC had offered SBS accommodation in its Southbank building, currently being expanded in Melbourne.

“40 years accommodation at peppercorn rent,” he stated.

Asked (again) about British animation Peppa Pig, he noted, “We are contracted with the fine pig family for a long period of time. No-one need have any concern.”

“And Lateline will be back next year.

Lateline has been running for 20 years and there’s no doubt the service is an important part of our offering, but one of the debates we’ve had is where do you best run that?

“I mean we now have a 24 hour news channel.”


  1. Re iview, I don’t have an issue with watching on my PC – it works just fine .
    It’s just a shame I’m unable to watch catchup iview on the big screen via my android box plugged into the TV.

  2. Agree with Maev….Sydney, I’ve never had a problem with iview and whenever I want to watch the ABC I use it. I think it’s a great service. As for the commercial networks online offerings, well as my mother used to say, if you don’t have anything nice to say…

  3. Maev....Sydney

    I love my ABC…love ABC24 spend a good bit of time there….also watch a lot of Iview…I personally, have never had an issue….I do however watch on my PC…not a hand held thingy….and I have a large HD monitor…but it works just fine for me.

  4. I think a TV news channel does make sense. As someone who does not have Foxtel I love having access to a 24 hours tv news channel. Before it came a long I watched news on other channels, now ABC is pretty much the only network I get my news from (in this medium).

  5. Didn’t the ABC moot introducing a paid version too? That is, keeping free online catchup TV but bringing in a kind of iview+ paid app with access to ABC archive content. They could offset the high costs of iview and invest in upgrading that way.

  6. iview is good when it works.
    Unfortunately it is incompatible with many recent android devices and Smart TVs.
    So frustrating to purchase an android box with the main purpose of watching Catchup Tv only to discover that I can’t watch iview on it.
    All the other telly stations work but iview.

    The ABC Technical problems messageboard is constantly inundated with unhappy viewers with the same problem as myself.

  7. Of course iview needs upgrading. It was one of the first, the resolution is terrible, its full of artifacts and keeps stalling. Iview is not a broadcast strategy though its a streaming platform.

    There’s still Radio, it lots drama to film and TV and can be streamed or podcast but it still broadcasts music and talkback. it’s still broadcast TV will remain too.

    A TV news channel makes much less sense when there is internet everywhere though.

  8. Actions speak louder than words. If mobile is a priority than provide a good quality windows phone app with the same content as your pc site especially with the Asian cup around the corner.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.