BBC opens up TV Application Layer to industry

The BBC has made its open source TV Application Layer available to the industry at large in order to make the development of connected TV applications for HTML-based devices easier.

Peter Lasko, technical product manager for BBC future media TV and mobile platforms, said in a blog post that the public broadcaster is making the Application Layer available via open source repository GitHub. He said the open source code would allow other parties to contribute to the development of the TV Application Layer and that sharing it should “make building applications on TV easier for others, helping to drive the uptake of this nascent technology”.

“The BBC is keen to encourage the connected TV market. As the BBC licence fee has funded this work, we can create more value for money by sharing this work with others in the industry, for the benefit of our audiences,” said Lasko, who added that the BBC hoped that the connected TV intiative would also help get more people online and contribute to the BBC’s media literacy campaign and the UK government’s Digital Britain initiative.

The BBC TV Application Layer was developed to enable the BBC iPlayer, news and sports applications to run on as many connected devices as possible. The Application Layer comprises a series JavaScript libraries and operates across a wide range of different Connected TVs, IPTVs, games consoles, set top boxes and Blu-ray devices. The BBC developed it as a standalone product in order to support all its connected TV needs into the future.

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