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BBC iPlayer for iPhone Launches in UK, 3G Streaming of Live TV and Radio

The BBC's iPlayer for iPhone has arrived in the United Kingdom with 3G streaming of live BBC TV and radio. In a blog post announcing the app, the BBC noted that 1.5 million users have installed the iPlayer for iPad app, and 16.5 million programs were watched on mobile devices, up 129% year-over-year. With the new iPhone and iPod Touch app, that number should continue to aggressively increase.

The UK version of iPlayer allows domestic viewers to view live BBC TV and radio and watch catch-up TV over Wi-Fi and 3G.


The BBC iPlayer app for the iPhone and iPod touch puts all of the BBC’s national television channels and radio networks in your pocket. You can now watch live television channels and listen to live radio stations wherever you are.

We have developed a neat live channel switcher so you can easily flick between channels just like on your TV or radio. If you want to see what else is on right now just tap on the ‘Live Channels’ button while you watch. So, if I’m watching BBC One on my phone and want to see what’s on BBC Two, I just tap on ‘Live Channels’ to switch over. It’s an easy way to see what’s on now and flip over.

The app is compatible with Apple AirPlay. If you are running iOS 5, you can connect your iPhone or iPod touch to Apple TV and watch your favourite programme on your television.

You can listen to any of the BBC’s national radio stations in the app. To make this easier, we have enabled background audio so you can do other things on your phone, like check mail or surf the web, while listening to your favourite BBC radio station.
The 3G streaming works on the iPhone 3GS or newer as well as 3G-capable iPads. The app uses extensive adaptive bitrate technologies to adjust streaming speeds depending on signal strength, and the BBC's tech team has worked closely with UK carriers to optimize the experience for users.

BBC iPlayer is a universal app for iPhone and iPad, free on the App Store for United Kingdom users only. [Direct Link]

The BBC global iPlayer app, which was updated last week, is available in most of Western Europe and Canada -- and is coming to the United States. The app doesn't have the Live-TV, DVR and TV catch-up features that the British version does -- instead, it's a video-on-demand subscription service that gives access to selected portions of the BBC archive.

Top Rated Comments

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Posted: 36 months ago

I wonder if the British know what a precious resource they have in the BBC. From here in the hyper-commercialized US, it looks like a very valuable intellectual crown property. Keep it up!


BBC isn't just great for the ad-free content, it's the fact that it legally has to provide non-bias news content, plus their website for news and sport is excellent.

I sometimes moan about having to pay a license fee, but generally we get our moneys worth.
Rating: 6 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago

Amyyyyyy pondddddd!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I know...
Rating: 4 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago
I wonder if the British know what a precious resource they have in the BBC. From here in the hyper-commercialized US, it looks like a very valuable intellectual crown property. Keep it up!

On the other hand, let me whine like non-US posters do when Apple rolls out a new service gradually, and say, "Let's have it here!"

I guess I knew that the subscription model was what was going to happen for us non-Brits, and watching live is too much of a technical challenge to pull off, but I'd still think that giving us some access to the "crown jewels" of the BBC for free would be a very cheap advertisement for Britain.
Rating: 4 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago

I wonder if the British know what a precious resource they have in the BBC. From here in the hyper-commercialized US, it looks like a very valuable intellectual crown property. Keep it up!

On the other hand, let me whine like non-US posters do when Apple rolls out a new service gradually, and say, "Let's have it here!"

I guess I knew that the subscription model was what was going to happen for us non-Brits, and watching live is too much of a technical challenge to pull off, but I'd still think that giving us some access to the "crown jewels" of the BBC for free would be a very cheap advertisement for Britain.


In general, we do. Sadly we still have newspapers such as the Daily Mail which fall over themselves to slur the BBC at every available opportunity.
We have just had momentous political issues over the European Union, with our prime minister effectively opting out of much of the union, and with potentially long term consequences for the economy, jobs, etc. etc.
And what is the Mail's headline in these dangerous times?

"BBC FAKES FROZEN PLANET."

You probably won't have had a chance to see this magnificent series yet; just about the best natural history program ever made, with magnificent photography, and as thought provoking as any program could be, about an important part of the natural world.
But, because one small part of the program, featuring a polar bear having cubs, was filmed at a Zoo (because it would be either impossible to do in the wild,or at the very least dangerous for both the camera team, and the cubs) this turns into the headline above.
This is just one of many and regular attacks on the BBC from certain elements of the press, in the UK.

So for some, sadly, the BBC is used as a political football. Sure, the Beeb don't always get everything right. That is impossible. But those with a political agenda, are always baying for the BBC's blood. Of course their probable connections with other broadcasters, presumably in "competition" with the Beeb, are never mentioned.

At least it is nice to see that there are those outside the UK who appreciate the work that the bBC does at it's best.
Rating: 3 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago


I sometimes moan about having to pay a license fee, but generally we get our moneys worth.



Mongrels
Lifes Too Short
Russle Howard
QI
Mock The Week
Dr Who
Rev
Claudia Winkleman
Rating: 3 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago
Amyyyyyy pondddddd!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Rating: 3 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago
Nice work BBC.

Wish I could get this and use it through my VPN :/ Not too keen on having multiple Apple accounts for different stores though.
Rating: 2 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago

A lot of us would actually rather not have it.

Immagine paying an extra £145 ($225 US) a year to get a couple of channels with a very broad array of content (i.e 80-90% of programs you have no interest in watching), its ad free but dont forget that if we want decent channels we have to pay another £50-£100 a month for Sky (Satellite) or VirginMedia (Cable) TV on top of the BBC enforced fee.


The BBC isn't just about the TV channels, they offer excellent radio networks too. Their website is reliable for news and sport. The BBC offers a good variety of sport coverage too. The BBC also has to be very careful what news stories they cover to avoid any political bias, which is another bonus.

Personally I'd rather it was scrapped, and stick ads on the BBC. We dont get things like Hulu either, just an unreliable iPlayer.

It costs the BBC (sorry, the British Public) millions to keep iPlayer running. No money is made through ads as the BBC are not allowed to show adverts in any way shape or form.


The iPlayer is not unreliable at all! What are you on about?

And the BBC does show adverts outside the UK to fund services/channels worldwide (such as BBC America).

Without the BBC, British TV would end up crap and we'd end up with more Murdoch controlled news coverage. Just what we need right?
Rating: 2 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago

...dont forget that if we want decent channels we have to pay another £50-£100 a month for Sky (Satellite) or VirginMedia (Cable) TV on top of the BBC enforced fee.


Decent channels?

I've had Sky since 1995 and all the rebrands of terrestrial digital (OnDigital, ITV Digital and Freeview). The only thing that Sky was good for was The Simpsons back in the old days. I'm eagerly awaiting the day they realise they've been giving me free film channels so we can scrap our basic subscription and turn it into a Freesat receiver. I can only imagine how good Frozen Planet looks in HD.

Picture quality, interface, "a million channels and nothing's on"... not a fan of Sky.

Sky News is an absolute joke. I'd sooner watch Russia Today or Fox News (not that I ever would).
Rating: 2 Votes
Posted: 36 months ago

I'm on a 50meg connection and even that still buffers, despite iPlayer needing an absolue maximum of 3meg/s for high quality content (not HD, just better than SD). I love iPlayer, its way better than the crummy ITV, C4 and C5 players, but its by no means perfect.


Unless you have a leased line T1 connection that would cost more than the average UK wage, you don't have a 50MB connection.

Virgin cable's "50mb" service is only "50mb" between your house and the cable cabinet at the end of the street. No UK home ISP offers an uncontented service without traffic management, and ISPs are never as simple as your connection speed is the speed at which your ISP can pull data from a third party server.

Virgin are pretty notorious for traffic management and poor peering arrangements from CDNs too.

Phazer
Rating: 2 Votes

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