BBC Unveils its Red-Button Interactive TV Schedule for the Coming Weeks

The BBC announced Thursday the line-up of content that will be available through its red-button interactive TV service for the next two weeks. Here are some highlights:

  • During next weekend's T in the Park 2009 music festival (July 10th-12th), viewers on the UK's free-to-air digital terrestrial platform, Freeview, will be able to press red to access up to three streams featuring highlights from the festival's headliners, from the BBC Acoustic/Collaborations stage at the event, and from BBC Three's coverage. Viewers on the Sky satellite and Virgin Media cable platforms, meanwhile, will be able to access a fourth stream that the BBC says will "take an alternative slant" on the festival, highlighting up-and-coming acts and extended sets from more established artists. Then, from July 13th-17th, digital viewers will be able to access festival highlights through the red button. (Note: these red-button services will not be available on the UK's free-to-air digital satellite service, Freesat.)
  • During Saturday night broadcasts of the show, "The National Lottery: Guestimation" (showcases the UK lottery's Dream Number draw, which raises funds for a number of the venues that will be hosting events at the 2012 London Olympics and Paralympics), digital viewers will be able to press red to play along with contestants. (Note: not available on Freesat.)
  • Following the new BBC Two action-comedy, "Krod Mandoon and the Flaming Sword of Fire" (i.e. 10:25PM, July 6th), digital viewers will be able to press red to access an exclusive interview with the show's stars, Matt Lucas, Sean Maguire and Alex McQueen. (Note: not available on Freesat.)
  • Each week, fans of the BBC Two comedy-drama, "Taking the Flak" (follows the progress of a small African war through the eyes of journalists sending home nightly reports for the Ten O'Clock News), will be able to press red to access new material and exclusive footage from the show's location in Africa (9:55PM, July 8th; 9:00PM, July 10th; 10:55PM, July 15th--not available on Freesat).
  • On July 5th, 7th, 9th, 13th, 14th and 16th, from approximately 9:30PM to 4:00AM, fans of the BBC Two comedy show, "That Mitchell and Webb Look," will be able to press red to see the show's stars, Robert Webb and David Mitchell, introducing new sketches, as well as new animations that have been specially commissioned for the BBC's red-button service. (Note: not available on Freesat.)
  • During the July 9th broadcast of the political panel talk show, "Question Time," viewers will, as always, be able to view information on the show's panelists and discussion topics, as well as a selection of comments texted in by viewers, on Red Button page 155.
  • From July 6th-8th, digital viewers will be able to press red to access highlights of the Wimbledon tennis tournament.
  • For next weekend's German Grand Prix Formula 1 auto race (July 10th-12th), digital viewers will be able to press red to access Friday's and Saturday's practice and qualifying sessions. Then, on the race day itself, they will be able to access 1) a choice of three streams, featuring split-screen in-car camera feeds, leaderboards and rolling highlights, 2) the option of listening to either network or BBC Radio 5 Live commentary, and 3) a post-race show. Finally, highlights will be made available through the red button the following day. In addition, children's channel, CBBC, will be providing youth-oriented coverage of the Grand Prix through the red button.
  • During the upcoming Ashes cricket test series between England and Australia, digital viewers will be able to press red to access live commentary from BBC Radio's Test Match team, led by Jonathan Agnew (first test: July 8th-10th; second test: July 16th-20th; third test: July 30th-August 3rd; fourth test: August 7th-11th; fifth test: August 20th-24th).
  • Supplemental live coverage of the Scottish Open (July 9th-12th) and the Open (July 16th-19th) golf championships will be offered through the red button.
  • As always, a rotating selection of games, based on its programs, will be available on the CBeebies children's channel's red-button service. (Note: not available on Freesat.)