(Pocket-lint) - The BBC has launched a new online shop that is calls the BBC Store. This is a place where episodes of its shows can be downloaded, at a charge.

So how is this different to iPlayer? And will people want to pay for things that were free not long ago?

Then there's the question, is this a step in the direction of privatisation for the BBC?

Here's everything you need to know about the BBC Store.

Download older content

Once shows are pushed off the back end of the iPlayer they can no longer be watched, thanks to the BBC's time limited offerings. Then what?

Until now to get episodes of Sherlock, say, you'd have to either subscribe to a streaming service that offered it or buy it on disc.

Now the BBC will offer its content to be bought directly from its Store. This will mean shows can be downloaded in SD or HD formats after paying for them. Once downloaded the person owns that content forever to do with as they please.

What's available on BBC Store?

As you'd expect all the BBC greats are on there to download and own. From box sets of Doctor Who and Top Gear to nature shows like Frozen Planet and The Hunt.

Individual episodes can be bought too. Although who is going to pay £1.89 for a missed episode of Eastenders in SD isn't too clear.

The first season of Peaky Blinder is available for £7.99 in SD or £9.99 in HD. When you consider a month of Netflix costs less and offers this show and more, this does seem pricey. But for ownership perhaps some people are willing to pay more.

Gifting is an option

The BBC Store offers gift vouchers that can be given allowing others to buy what they want.

So rather than giving a box set at Christmas, say, you could give an amount that lets the person choose what they want. Then they can simply choose and download the show they fancy there and then.

Gift cards are sold in £10 or £25 amounts in Asda, Sainsbury's, W H Smiths and Wilko.

There's an editorial Colletions section

Not sure what to watch? The BBC has done the work for you with its Collections section. This offers shows guides in curated form, with the best episodes filtered out for you to find.

For example the Louis Theroux Collection is chosen by the man himself. Each episode is listed with a blurb written by Louis explaining why this is a special episode. Each one is sold separately, rather than as an entire collection to buy as a series.

This also works for greats like Doctor Who, where Collections put together the best of certain eras, like The Master & Missy for example.

The BBC Store is live now and offers a 25 per cent discount on the first purchase of anyone registering for the first time.

READ: EE Pocket-lint Gadget Awards 2015 shortlist nominations announced, vote for your winners

Writing by Luke Edwards.