BBC has announced that Myanmar users of Viber can now follow its BBC Burmese channel on the app for news updates. The Viber channel, which can be viewed on the Viber mobile app or desktop version will deliver several updates of key news stories of the day in text, images, as well as short audio and video clips.
Viber has retained its popularity amongst mobile users in Myanmar, and daily usage is believed to be way ahead of other chat apps that have entered the market such as WeChat, LINE and BeeTalk.
BBC Burmese Editor, Tin Htar Swe, shared, “While BBC Burmese audio news bulletins are available for listening on mobile phones in Myanmar, this is the first time BBC Burmese content is made available on a chat app. With Viber’s reported 14.8 million unique users* in Myanmar, we can now connect with our audiences – existing and new – through this growing platform, offering them access to news from the BBC, in their language.”
To access the BBC Burmese Public Chat on Viber App, users are required to:
- go to their App Store and download the Viber App on their smart phone; Viber will ask them to provide their phone number – that’s all they need to register
- once they are in Viber, they need to click on the ‘Public’ icon – this takes them to Viber Public Chats
- hit the magnifying glass and search for the BBC Burmese Public Chat
- hit ‘Follow’ – and the chat will be visible whenever the ‘Public’ icon is clicked.
According to BBC, BBC Burmese reaches 6.9 million people every week (2015). The BBC Burmese Facebook page has over 3.7 million fans (December 2015). The BBC Burmese radio programming is broadcast on shortwave and on Asiasat5 satellite television channel and streamed online via bbcburmese.com. Selected radio programming is rebroadcast by some of the country’s nationwide FM networks. BBC Burmese TV news bulletins are broadcast live on the national TV channel, Myanmar National Television (MNTV) at 20.45 local time (14.15 GMT) Monday to Friday, and are streamed live on the website bbcburmese.com.