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Britain’s Got Talent 2020 Voting FAQs

Britain’s Got Talent 2020 Voting

Frequently Asked Questions


1. How can I vote via the Britain’s Got Talent app?

You can vote by downloading the latest version of the App.

2. How do I get votes?

If you have the correct version of the iOS app, when you go into the voting section you will be prompted to authenticate your device using your Apple ID in order to receive votes. You will only have to do this once per device and you will not be charged. Registration is used solely to enable you to receive your five votes per device.

With the Android version, authentication occurs automatically. Votes will automatically appear in the app as voting starts in the show. It is free to vote via the official app this series.

3. How much does it cost to vote using the app?

It’s free to vote via the app.  Data charges may apply, please check with your network provider for details. 

4. How many free votes will I get?

Each eligible device will receive five votes per voting event. A voting event is classed as one complete vote, from when the vote opens until it closes. A voting event may span more than one show, for example voting may open at the end of the first show and then close in the later show that same evening, or off air; you’ll only be able to vote five times per authenticated device for this one voting event.

After you have cast your first vote you may see a short advert then you will be asked to tap your screen when prompted. You will then receive a further four votes, giving you a total of five votes

I have downloaded the app but can’t see any votes.  Why?

There are 5 main reasons why you may be unable see votes:

i. It’s too early 

Votes will only appear on eligible devices when voting starts in the show.

ii. Your device is not eligible

Your devices must be linked to an Apple or Google Play account. You can have a maximum of six devices linked to each Apple or Google Play account. These should all receive five votes per voting event. Any further devices will not receive votes.

iii. Your 4G/5G or internet connection may have dropped 

If your device is eligible and voting has started but no votes are showing, your 4G/5G or internet connection may have dropped at the point we gave you your votes, try moving to a different location and then force the app to close:

On Apple devices:

1. Double-click the Home button.

2. Swipe left or right until you have located the Britain’s Got Talent app.

3. Swipe the app up to close it.

Then re-open the app and your votes should now be showing. If not, please contact ITV Customer Care at itvihelp@itv.com.

       On Android devices

Go to “Settings” then “Application Manager”. Scroll down until you find “Britain’s Got Talent”, tap on it and choose “Force Stop”

Then re-open the app and your votes should now be showing.   If not, please contact ITV Customer Care at itvihelp@itv.com

iv. There has been a technical error

In the unlikely case that a technical error occurs then an information message should appear in the app. If there is no obvious reason for the error then you can contact ITV Customer Care at itvihelp@itv.com.

v. You have used up your votes 

Each device will receive five votes per voting event (see FAQ 4 for an explanation of a voting event). This means, for example, if you cast all five of your votes straight after the vote opens, you will not be able to vote during the remainder of the voting event which may include a later show that same evening.

5. I have votes but cannot cast them.  Why?

There are 3 main reasons why you may be unable to cast your vote:

i. The vote is closed

Full details of when you may cast your vote will be announced in-show. You will only be able to vote whilst the voting period for each voting event is open. It is not possible to cast your vote at any other time.

ii. You do not have a strong enough wifi or 4G/5G signal

You will need a strong, constant wifi or 4G/5G signal to go through the voting process, otherwise you may experience error messages. We don’t recommend voting whilst on the move as your signal strength may vary.

iii. There has been a technical error

In the unlikely case that a technical error occurs then an information message should appear on the app. If there is no obvious reason for the error you can contact ITV Customer Care at itvihelp@itv.com.

6. Can I use my votes in other programmes?

No. Votes can only be used for the current series of Britain’s Got Talent.

7. Can I ‘rollover’ votes to the next day/other shows?

No. You can only use votes for that particular voting event. After each vote has closed, shortly afterwards any unused votes will be removed from your app. Votes for a new voting event will appear in your app the next time voting opens.

8. Can I move my votes between devices/on to a new device?You cannot move unused votes between devices. 

9. What happens to unused votes if I delete the app?

If you delete the app, you can download it again and you will still have your remaining votes as long as you log back in with the same Apple ID or Google Play account details. You must do this within the voting window.  If you download the app after the vote window closes you will not be able to use your remaining votes. You will get 5 free votes during the next voting event.

10. My question isn’t answered here, where can I get further assistance?

You can contact ITV Customer Care via email at itvihelp@itv.com.

11. What does the “restore purchase” button do?

The “restore purchase” button doesn’t do anything but is an Apple requirement for the app.


1. What are Mobile Short Dial Codes (MSDCs)?

Mobile Short Dial Codes (MSDCs) (also known as Voice Short Codes) are shorter than a normal telephone numbers, typically between 5 and 7 digits long. MSDCs are numbers to call (not text) from UK mobile phones where callers are charged a guaranteed fixed price for the call regardless of their UK mobile network provider. ITV is asking UK mobile users to vote via their mobile by dialling the relevant MSDC promoted in Britain’s Got Talent. UK mobile users will be charged a fixed cost of 50p per vote.

2. Why is ITV using MSDCs?

MSDCs were introduced in our voting shows to help our viewers better understand the costs involved with voting.

When calling premium rate ‘09’ numbers from mobiles, calls usually cost considerably more than if calling from a landline and the cost can vary from mobile network to network.   MSDCs were introduced to enable viewers to vote from mobiles for the same cost as voting from a BT landline to the 09 services.  

Ofcom changed the way UK calls to 09 were charged from 1st July 2015 and calls to 09 numbers from landlines and mobiles now consist of the service charge (the 50p charge to vote, as promoted in the Britain’s Got Talent shows and on the websites) and an access charge which is the charge your telephone network operator makes to enable you to access the service.  

Access charges are generally higher from mobile network operators, than landline network operators, therefore it is still cheaper for voters calling from mobile phones to vote via the MSDCs.  To find out the access charge your network operator makes, we suggest you visit their website or contact your network operator. The network operators set their own access charges and no revenues are received by ITV for this charge.  

You may find the below link helpful for checking call costs.  Ofcom is the UK’s communications regulator.


3. How do I vote by MSDC?

It is very simple. Using your UK mobile phone, simply dial the short number shown on screen for your favourite act, when the vote is open.  There is one 7 digit MSDC allocated to each act. The number an act has in the semi-final may not be the same as the number they have in the final if they get through, so please make sure you check the numbers promoted in-show and dial carefully to make sure you are voting for your chosen act. 

If you call while the vote is open you will hear a message confirming your vote.  If you try to call when the vote is closed you may hear a non-chargeable message informing you that the vote is closed. 

4. Can I vote by SMS/texting the MSDC?

No. You can’t text/SMS to the Mobile Short Dial Code number. If you try to text the MSDC, this will not work and your vote will not be counted. To make sure your vote is counted please make sure you call the number and dial carefully.

5. Why can’t I vote by text? 

We can’t include text voting on Britain’s Got Talent because there is the risk of potential delays within the mobile text networks at busy times and this could result in text votes not being received within the period when the vote is open and so they would not be counted but you would still be charged. 

6. How is voting by MSDC different to text?

With text/SMS, there could be network delays and you do not always know if your vote has been counted but you may still be charged even if your vote arrives too late to be counted. 

A phone call to a MSDC works like a phone call to a ‘09’ premium rate number. The advantage of using MSDC telephone calls for voting rather than text voting is that you know at the time of the call that your vote has been counted and that you have been charged for your vote.  

This means that if the exchange is busy (for example because of a high volume of calls) you will hear an engaged tone so you will know you have not got through and your vote has not counted. If this happens to you, we recommend waiting a moment and then trying again. 

Also, unlike text, you should not be charged if you try to call a MSDC outside of the vote open period, or make a call to a MSDC which is no longer in use.

7. How much will it cost to vote on Britain’s Got Talent by MSDC?

Voting via a MSDC from UK mobile networks will cost 50p per vote, with 15p from each vote going to the Royal Variety Charity.

8. Will I be charged if I try to vote using a MSDC when the vote is closed?

Calls outside the period when voting is open and those made to any of the vote numbers not currently in use should not be charged.

9. Why can’t I vote by MSDC from the Channel Islands and Isle of Man?

The Channel Islands and Isle of Man are covered by separate mobile network operators who do not currently support voting by MSDCs.  Viewers in these regions will still be able to vote as they have done in previous shows by dialling the ‘09’ numbers for acts, from their landlines or mobile phones. Calls to the ‘09’ numbers cost 50p plus your network’s access charge. 

10. Why can’t I vote by MSDCs from outside the UK?

The MSDCs are provided by the UK mobile network operators (Vodafone, O2, EE (previously T Mobile and Orange), Virgin and ‘3’)) and are only accessible via these operators.  It is also unlikely that calls can be made to MSDCs from UK mobiles when these are outside of the UK, as this would be subject to mobile network operator international roaming arrangements with foreign network operators and calls to MSDCs are unlikely to be possible under such roaming arrangements. Please check with your network operator.

11. Can I call a MSDC from my landline?

No.  MSDC voting is only available from mobile phones. If you try to call a MSDC from your landline you will not be connected to the voting service and your vote will not be counted. In a very small number of cases, the landline network operator may route the call to a local destination as it may match a “local” telephone number which may result in a ‘wrong number’ call being made. Such calls would be chargeable if they are answered.

12. Can I still call the ‘09’ numbers from my mobile?

Yes, you can still call ‘09’ numbers from your mobile but it is likely to cost you more than if you are calling from a landline.  09 calls are charged at 50p plus your network access charge.  The access charge from mobile network operators is generally higher than that charged by landline network operators.  

If you decide to call the ‘09’ voting numbers from your UK mobile phone then you will hear a non-chargeable message at the start of the call asking you to call the Mobile Short Dial Codes instead. If you remain on the line after the message then you will be able to vote for your chosen contestant, when the vote is open, but your UK mobile network operator will charge you the 50p vote cost plus their network access charge.  Details of your provider’s network access charge should be available on their website and we recommend to check with your network operator for the correct information. 

13.   Why don’t the UK Mobile Network Operators charge a fixed rate for calls from mobiles to ‘09’ numbers?

The UK mobile network operators decide the pricing for calling numbers via their networks, including ‘09’ numbers.  We advise viewers to contact their UK mobile network operator if they require more information on their charging rates.  

14. Will I receive ‘spam’ / unwanted marketing texts if I vote by MSDC?

No, you should not receive any text messages from ITV or any other organisation as a result of voting using the MSDCs. ITV does not sell on mobile telephone numbers to any third party. Text spamming is caused by companies sending unsolicited text messages to mobile telephone numbers. ITV in no way supports this practice and takes great care to guard numbers from any unauthorised use. If you receive unwanted text messages from other companies that you are being charged for, you can contact Phone-paid Services Authority, the premium rate services regulator on 0300 30 300 20* between 9:30am and 12:30pm Monday to Friday (excluding Bank Holidays) or via their website -   https://psauthority.org.uk/for-consumers/contact-us-for-consumers

*Calls to 03 numbers should cost no more than geographic 01 or 02 calls and may be part of inclusive minutes subject to your provider and your call package.

15. Why can’t I call the MSDC number from my “Voice over IP” (VOIP) connection?

Not all UK telephone network operators, including some VOIP operators, allow voting by traditional premium rate 09 numbers. The new MSDC numbers are intended only for voting via the UK mobile network operators and so will almost certainly not be supported by the fixed line and VoIP network operators.

16. Why isn’t it working when I try to call the MSDC number from my mobile?

There are a small number of UK mobile phone users who are unable to call MSDCs. It may be that there is a calling bar in place for premium rate services so we recommend checking with your mobile network operator to see if you can lift the calling bar. If you still cannot get through via the MSDC number then you can still vote by calling the 09 voting numbers using a landline.


1. Why have I been charged more than 50p?

From July 2015, OFCOM introduced “UK Calling” which is designed to make call costs clearer for consumers. Call charges to “09” numbers are now in two parts: the service charge (the charge advertised on screen) and the Network Access Charge which is the operator charge.  Each network operator has set their own access charge. Please check charges with your network operator. 

You may find the below link helpful for checking call costs.  Ofcom is the UK’s communications regulator.


If you are using a mobile phone, we suggest you call the Mobile Short Dial Code (MSDC), this will charge a flat fee of 50p. 

2. Why have I been charged outside the vote window?

We state clearly on screen and verbally when the voting period opens and closes and that callers should wait until that time before casting their vote. There is a small chance that if you called outside this time that a network other than BT would charge for this call. If you have been charged, then notify your service provider immediately.

3. I was trying to call for one act and heard a different act’s message?

ITV has implemented a thorough testing schedule before each show to ensure the correct audio is playing on the correct act’s line. Please dial carefully when voting to make sure you are voting for your chosen act.

4. I have been trying to vote, but keep getting the engaged tone?

Because the phone lines can be very active throughout the UK when the vote opens, some callers may experience the engaged tone - especially those in rural/remote areas. We recommend that you call back within a couple of minutes when the traffic through your local exchange would have subsided. Engaged tones are controlled at local telephone exchange and something that ITV cannot control.

5. I called but received a dead tone?

If you hear a dead tone after dialling or trying to dial the premium rate number - then this is likely to mean that you are premium rate barred and you should check with your network operator about lifting the bar if you wish to vote.

6. I tried voting but couldn’t get through, why?

Given the high volume of viewers and callers that some TV voting shows generate, it is possible for a large number of people to pick up the phone simultaneously when the on-screen announcement is made. Sometimes this can cause some callers to get an engaged tone for short periods of time immediately after an on-screen announcement; however, any congestion tends to clear quite quickly. 

7. Can one act’s number be constantly engaged and another’s free?

Like all the big shows, we use a voting system where at least the first eight digits of the phone numbers and the first 5 digits of the MSDC are the same for all acts, with only the last two digits of the phone number changing depending on who you want to vote for. 

As the telephone network only uses the first eight digits in a telephone number and first 5 digits for the MSDC number to route calls to the voting system, it is impossible for calls for different acts to be treated differently. 

Once calls reach the voting system they are answered in turn, on a first-come, first-served basis. Each answering point is instructed to accept votes for all acts; there are no dedicated answering points for individual acts.

8. How much money goes to charity

15 pence from each phone vote (via the 09 numbers and MSDCs) goes to the Royal Variety Charity - www.royalvarietycharity.org

9. Can I vote from the Republic of Ireland?

Yes. The details of this will be promoted by the broadcaster of Britain’s Got Talent in the Republic of Ireland. You can find more information about voting in the Republic of Ireland on the Virgin Media Television website at www.virginmediatelevision.ie/bgtvote.

10. Who can I contact if I need assistance / have further questions about voting?

You can contact ITV Customer Care by email at itvihelp@itv.com

11. Who can I contact if I have a query that’s not about voting?

You can email ITV Viewer Services at viewerservices@itv.com

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