BBC Sounds generated 250 million plays in the fourth quarter of 2019

The BBC has shared a few statistics about listening for BBC Sounds, one of very few peeks behind the scenes with its app effort. During the last quarter of 2019, the app attracted a peak weekly audience of 2.9 million, besting the record of 2.5 million in the third quarter.

The October-December period generated 250 million plays of all content. On-demand listening was responsible for 44% of that total. Podcasts and on-demand radio programs saw more than 100 million plays, twice the result from the third quarter. Live content provided the remaining 56% of plays in Q4 and took 67% of total listening hours.

BBC Sounds is part of the broadcaster’s attempts to reach a younger audience. The BBC said that more than half a million people aged 16-34 use the app each week.

“We’ve seen great growth on Sounds with more and more people using it for live and on demand listening,” BBC Sounds Controller Jonathan Wall said. “Our brilliant live radio stations are at the heart of BBC Sounds and at the same time people are increasingly choosing to listen to podcasts and radio on demand. No matter how or what people want to listen to, Sounds makes it easier to discover and enjoy something relevant from the BBC. It’s testimony to our great range of audio that well known favourites such as Desert Island Discs as well as popular podcasts like The Missing Cryptoqueen all feature prominently in our top titles.”

Anna Washenko