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Trust asks BBC to cut costs of "red button" service

Trust urged the BBC to phase out its less popular areas such as accompaniments to some pre-recorded

The BBC Trust has recommended the corporation to cut the costs of its "red button" interactive service along with drama and comedy programmes.

A review by the trust pointed out that the service's digital text service with its news, weather and sport updates attracted more visitors, while its coverage of live events - such as Glastonbury, Formula 1 and the Olympics - drew fewer viewers.

The trust urged the BBC to focus on the service's successful areas and phase out its less popular areas such as accompaniments to some pre-recorded programmes.

It also said that the corporation should cut the costs spent on distribution across different platforms such as Freeview, Freesat, Sky and Virgin cable. The BBC currently spends £20.4m -more than half of the red button's annual £39.3m budget - on distribution.

BBC Trustee Diane Coyle, who led the review, said the BBC's red button service is not as popular as its other services like iPlayer, but its costs are substantial.

"The Trust will therefore look to the BBC Executive to reduce costs when and where possible by focussing on the aspects of the service that are most successful to date," she added.