The BBC has reported its 2012 usage figures for its groundbreaking web-TV iPlayer system, and they're rather startling: 2.32 billion TV and radio program streaming requests went through the online portal in 2012 (equating to 37 for every person in the U.K.). 36.5 billion minutes of content were served up in all, which is about 70,000 years' worth of material. 177% growth year-on-year was seen in access from mobile devices, and mobile access is now more than a quarter of all iPlayer use. Since the BBC enabled actual program downloading onto iPads and iPhone there has been nearly 11 million downloads.
While iPlayer began as a U.K.-only service, it's expanded internationally. It's arguable that even compared to efforts by names like Netflix and Amazon, the BBC's hugely successful efforts point to the future of TV via online access.
[Image: Flickr user restlessglobetrotter]