The launch marks the first time the BBC has live streamed events on Facebook. A beta version of the app lets users watch the BBC’s main coverage of the Wimbledon tennis tournament along with up to six additional match streams from other courts. Users can make comment under each stream and see how many of their friends are watching the same event. The corporation plans to add a live chat function in time for the Olympics. During the Games, up to 24 live streams will be available.
Phil Fearnley, general manager BBC News & Knowledge, said: “It’s a core part of the BBC’s mission to bring our quality content to audiences wherever they are, so I’m very excited to be able to offer sport fans on Facebook a really distinctive live streaming experience. With our Facebook app we aim to bring even greater value to our online audiences, enabling them to watch together and share their excitement. We hope to use it to test the benefits of social viewing, as part of our ambition to deliver more innovative and transformative experiences to sports fans.”