S4C is planning a raid from the borders of Wales to the Marches of the Internet, with on demand catch-up via the web, a YouView app and channels on BBC iPlayer and YouTube.
The Welsh-language TV channel will expand beyond its own online on-demand service Clic, moving onto TV Catch-up and YouTube this year, then YouView and iPlayer in 2014.
The goal is to have all of S4C’s programmes and a live streaming channel on the iPlayer by the end of 2014.
Read Recombu Digital’s guides to BBC iPlayer and YouViewS4C’s chief executive, Ian Jones, said: “These announcements show that S4C is serious about ensuring that the Channel is available in as many different forms as possible as we move into the digital age.
“Our television services are still paramount to us, of course, but an increasing number of people now use digital platforms to watch content – especially on-demand services.
“S4C currently runs its own online on-demand service, Clic, and our viewers increasingly use the service. But in order to raise awareness of S4C and our great programming, we need to make our programmes available on larger platforms – as well as emerging platforms.”
The YouTube partnership will begin with short-form shows before the end of 2013, with live potential for live streaming in future.
The YouView app is in development, while S4C’s presence on iPlayer will expand from a few programmes today to a full channel in autumn 2013, initially for an 18-month trial.
Sian Gwynedd, BBC Cymru Wales’ head of Welsh language programmes, said: “This is a very important development which will ensure that all Welsh language programmes from the BBC and S4C, as well as BBC Radio Cymru’s programmes, will be available live and on demand not only to audiences in Wales but across the UK.”
The agreement with S4C is a victory for TV Catch-up, which has a long-running dispute with ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 over its free retransmissions of their channels online and through its apps for iOS, Android, and Windows 8 on desktop and phone.
Bruce Pilley, TVCatchup chairman, said: “S4C is leading the way amongst its peers by actively engaging with us to further its public service remit and to extend its reach to a wider audience.
“We’re looking forward to a fruitful and enduring relationship with S4C and plan to form similar partnerships with other public service broadcasters.”