The BBC has announced the launch of an application that will allow people to watch Wimbledon games live via Facebook. The application will be used again later in the summer to stream live coverage of the 2012 Olympic Games, which are taking place in London in July.
The application, which was release by BBC Sport and is restricted to UK-only viewers, will enable Facebook users to tune in live for sporting events as well as watch events with friends who are also online. There's also the ability to chat with friends about the action as it happens as well as comment threads under each stream allowing discussing with everyone else watching. You can 'Like' and share different streams and an in-app activity stream will provide real time updates showing what your friends are watching.
"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," said Phil Fearnley, General Manager BBC News & Knowledge. "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."
The app is currently in beta and will feature the BBC's network TV coverage, up to six extra match streams, and comment threads and sharing. Live chat will be added in time for the Olympics. By that time, the application will offer up to 24 streams of live Olympics video.