The BBC has plans to sublease capacity made available by the move of BBC Three to an online-only channel.
Four separate slots will be created on DTT and digital satellite running from 21:00 and 07:00 seven days a week. BBC Three currently commences broadcasting at 19:00 each evening, but on its closure CBBC will extend its hours through to 21:00.
On DTT BBC Three holds one slot on Multiplex 1 and a second on Multiplex B. There are also two such slots on digital satellite.
The details, released as part of the BBC Executive’s response to findings by the BBC Trust, acknowledge that the 21:00 might make the slot less attractive. There are also restrictions on how the slot on Multiplex 1 might be used because it falls within capacity gifted to the BBC for public service channels (Broadband TV News notes that if it has been gifted for PSBs, then that is its correct use).
No final decision on the capacity’s use has been made; currently the BBC Executive is working to a timetable of January 2016 for the closure of BBC Three as a linear channel.
The Trust has now launched a second consultation following conclusion in June that gave provisional approval to the plans for BBC Three, BBC iPlayer and CBBC, but provisionally rejected the proposal for BBC One +1.
The timeshifted version of the BBC’s flagship channel is back on the agenda. The Executive says that Ofcom used estimates from the high-end of commercial impact studies – rather than the mid-range – in its calculation of the effect BBC One +1 would have on the commercial sector.