iPlayer usage continues to rise, despite the lure of the great outdoors during the summer. Between July and September 2021, programmes were streamed 1.5 billion times.
The figures saw a year-on-year rise of 20% and a 49% rise compared to summer 2019. The increase in figures meant the iPlayer scored its best summer period on record.
Viewers flocked to watch the opening episode of Vigil, becoming the most streamed programme with 6.8 million streaming requests up to the end of September.
The second most popular item was the UEFA Men’s Euro 2020 final between England and Italy. It triggered more than 6 million requests.
In third place, the documentary 9/11: Inside the President’s War Room was streamed almost 2.8 million times.
The Tokyo Olympics accounted for 90 million streams via the iPlayer. (104 million in total when adding figures from the BBC Sport website.) This is despite the BBC’s reduced broadcast rights for the games, following Discovery’s acquisition of most TV and streaming rights.
EastEnders, struggling with linear TV ratings, saw 74 million streaming requests over the three month period.
Dan McGolpin, director of BBC iPlayer and channels, says:
“These results show the fantastic breadth of content available for all on BBC iPlayer including the country’s biggest sporting moments, enthralling new drama series like Vigil and captivating documentaries like 9/11: Inside the President’s War Room. iPlayer has something for everyone and people are using it more than ever, viewing grew 20% year-on-year to our best Q3 on record and we are on track for our best ever year.”
The BBC iPlayer will be revamped in the coming months with a new look and logo, plus additional HD streams of BBC One, BBC Alba and BBC Parliament.