BBC enables iPlayer mobile downloads

Editor | 04-09-2012

Part of its strategy to take its popular service beyond the PC and onto a host of different devices, from smartphones and tablets, to connected TVs and games consoles, the BBC is now supporting downloads from the iPlayer to smartphones and tablets.

Explain the rationale for the move, the BBC says that iPlayer take-up on portable devices has been particularly impressive with 30 million requests for content via mobile or tablet in July 2012 alone. This represented more than a fifth of all requests for iPlayer programmes across all platforms. Moreover the BBC says that the iPlayer is now available on over 550 devices.

With the new service users can download multiple programmes to a mobile device and store them for 30 days. Once play has been pressed, viewers can keep watching for seven more days. The new mobile downloads feature is initially available on iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch devices running iOS 5.1. The BBC will be bringing the feature to Android phones and tablets soon, and are looking at making downloads available on other devices in the future.

Commenting on the announcement, David Madden Executive Producer TV & iPlayer Mobile, BBC Future Media said: "More and more people are comfortable with watching TV across different devices depending on where they are and what they're doing. For example, our data shows that children's content is particularly popular on tablets, as they are devices kids can sit and play with wherever… With the launch of mobile downloads for iPlayer, on-the-go viewing is transformed.”