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BBC revamps news and sport websites

LONDON - The BBC is launching the first phase of its news and sport website revamp next week, featuring higher profile promotion of its new embedded video service, extra emphasis on breaking news and live events, wider page designs and more ambitious use of pictures.

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A second stage will launch later on in the year, with further improvements to design and functionality.

The developments are part of wider plans by the BBC to redesign the whole of BBC.co.uk, to give users more control over their online experience.

The embedded media player is designed to put the BBC's best video and audio at the heart of story pages and indexes of the news and sport websites. It allows users to watch video within the story rather than in a separate pop-up window.

The BBC said that early indications were encouraging, with at least 10 times more people looking at embedded video than when it was only available on a separate player.

Other developments include a range of revamped programme websites aiming to maximise the impact of flagship news and current affairs programmes across all audiences.

The BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat website has relaunched with a dedicated team producing a mix of text, audio and video news for its younger audience.

The Today programme site relaunches in May and an overhaul of Panorama's online presence is planned for the summer.

The mobile versions of the BBC news and sport sites were redesigned earlier this month to improve the user experience and they will also see a range of new features over the year.

Pete Clifton, head of editorial development for multimedia journalism at the BBC, said: "This is the start of a rolling programme to refresh our sites and introduce exciting new designs and features across our services.

"All the changes are focused in showcasing our unbeatable content, underlining our reputation for breaking news, coverage of live sport, and brilliant reporting and analysis from our local, national and international journalists."

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