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Netflix signs up BBC shows for UK premiere

The US streaming giant has signed a deal with BBC Worldwide, so will have shows from Auntie when it launches here next year.

Netflix is coming to the UK next year, and it's just announced it'll be packing some home-grown BBC programmes. Jolly good.

The US-based streaming giant has signed a deal with BBC Worldwide, bringing a host of popular shows to the service. So what can you expect? Shows like Torchwood, Spooks, Doctor Who, Top Gear, Little Britain, as well as old favourites like Fawlty Towers and Miss Marple, will be available on-demand.

A smattering of those series are currently available through iPlayer, but only when they've been broadcast recently. This should be a more comprehensive list.

Netflix will let you stream these shows and more to your Internet-connected TV, tablet, games console, computer or mobile, as long as it has the Netflix app. So good news if someone else is hogging the TV.

The service already offers BBC Worldwide shows in the US, Canada, and Latin America, so it makes perfect sense to bring them home. Even if it is via an American service.

Netflix expanded to Latin America back in July, then announced in October it was coming next year to the UK. There's no set launch date yet, just "early 2012" -- and no price either, just a "low monthly price". You can sign up now to be alerted at netflix.com.

But considering how massive Netflix is in America, it's sure to be a tempting prospect, and definitely far cheaper than a satellite or cable subscription like Sky HD or Virgin Media TiVo. And online services like LoveFilm should be worried.

US Netflix customers can stream movies to their Nintendo 3DS, so fingers crossed it'll do the same over here, and not restrict access to meatier consoles like the PS3 and Xbox 360.

We're still awaiting concrete details on the UK launch, but rest assured we'll be watching this one, popcorn at the ready. Would you sign up for Netflix? Or are you an ardent admirer of LoveFilm? Let us know in the comments below, or over on our Facebook page.