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BBC iPlayer to go global on the iPad

BBC iPlayer

By Barry Collins

Posted on 2 Dec 2010 at 10:27

The BBC will launch an international version of its iPlayer on the iPad next year.

The catch-up TV service is currently only available in the UK, but the BBC Trust approved plans for an international version of the iPlayer last month.

That will initially take the form of a subscription-based iPad version of the iPlayer, which will launch in the first half of 2011.

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"I can announce here that we’re going to be adopting a pure paid subscription model for the global iPlayer for launch – in part to get audiences used to using the service, but more importantly so we can generate additional value from the service in terms of the user data that it gives us," BBC.com managing director Luke Bradley-Jones told the Digital TV Summit, according to a report on PaidContent.co.uk.

The service will help drive extra revenue for existing content into the BBC coffers, although it will disappoint business travellers who are currently barred from accessing iPlayer content overseas (without some kind of remote desktop solution), despite having already paid for the content via the licence fee.

Bradley-Jones said the corporation planned to bring the international version of the iPlayer to other platforms in due course.

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User comments

Random iMoan

Just thought I'd get in with a complaint about how Apple-centric PCPro is before one of the kids.

So anyway, this is good for the BBC of course because they need to find new ways of making money. I'm surprised there is no way to ensure UK citizens abroad can't access for free - perhaps by registering with TV licence details. If I really needed the TV while away, I'd have gone with Slingbox anyway...

By colsmith on 2 Dec 2010

And in the UK?

Seeing as the iPlayer website as it shows up on the iPad seems to be missing an awful lot of programmes (Am I correct?) how about making this dedicated app free to use in the UK?
That is presuming it will be an app, and not a subscription webpage.

By Heliosphan on 2 Dec 2010

User Data?

"we can generate additional value from the service in terms of the user data that it gives us"

I guess that means the iPlayer app copies all your email contacts, bank account data, etc and passes it back to the Beeb?

Or, shock horror, does that mean targeted adverts? From the beeb?

I'll let my friend know that he can pay to watch the iPlayer on his iPad, while I can watch it free on my netbook...

By Sercul on 2 Dec 2010

I love the BBC

Hopefully this can raise a lot of revenue for the Beeb and satisfy international fans of its programs.

By longn on 2 Dec 2010

@Sercul

Your friend can already watch iPlayer for free, from within the UK, on his iPad. The subscription version allows access when he is abroad.

Assuming he can afford the subscription after the BEEB has emptied his bank account, and that of all his friends, of course.

By colsmith on 2 Dec 2010

iPlayer already works abroad for free

Using exPat shield:
http://eu.techcrunch.com/2010/10/26/anchorfrees-ex
pat-shield-targets-iplayer-loving-brits-abroad/

You get ads, but hey it's free...

By the_bunker on 2 Dec 2010

iPlayer already works abroad for free

Using exPat shield:
http://eu.techcrunch.com/2010/10/26/anchorfrees-ex
pat-shield-targets-iplayer-loving-brits-abroad/

You get ads, but hey it's free...

By the_bunker on 2 Dec 2010

@heliosphan

You are correct, the content available on iPad is much reduced in comparison to what's available via the regular web interface. Interestingly, I have the same problem with an iPlayer-capable telly. It appears you can only view the last 7 day's worth of interesting stuff whereas, using the web client, that restriction does not exist.
If the beeb wants to make a success of this initiative, they really need to get on top of that. Some of the best content I've viewed in the last week is not available via the iPad or TV UI

By Throbinevans on 2 Dec 2010

I'm abroad, I've subscribed today and since the first download it has crashed consistently - haven't been able to use it - am technical so have tried the usual and now surfing looking for an answer. Not happy.

By phodgson13 on 4 Aug 2011

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