BBC Trust gives ‘iPlayer’ go-ahead; must be Mac-compatible ‘within reasonable time frame’

Apple Store“BBC shows such as Doctor Who and EastEnders are to be made available on-demand after the BBC’s iPlayer service was given the green light,” BBC News reports.

“The service – which will launch later this year – allows viewers to watch programmes online for seven days after their first TV broadcast,” The Beeb reports. “Episodes can also be downloaded and stored for up to 30 days.”

“The BBC Trust gave the iPlayer the go-ahead after consultations with members of the public. About 10,500 individuals and organisations responded to the public value test after the trust gave its provisional approval in January,” The Beeb reports.

The Beeb reports, “The iPlayer computer application will only be initially available to those with Windows PCs in the UK. But the trust has asked the BBC to ensure that the iPlayer computer application can run on different systems – such as Apple Macs – within ‘a reasonable time frame.'”

The Beeb reports, “Earlier this month BBC Future Media boss Ashley Highfield said the corporation was committed to rolling out the iPlayer on Windows PCs first of all, and then cable TV services, Apple Macs, and eventually Freeview boxes. But the BBC said it could not commit to a two-year deadline to achieve this goal, saying it was up to the third parties concerned.”

“However, the BBC Trust said it would audit the BBC’s progress against this objective every six months to ensure that members of the public not using Windows PCs would not be disadvantaged,” The Beeb reports.

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “twelveightyone” for the heads up.]
There’s nothing “reasonable” about not even being able to commit to a two-year time frame.

Related articles:
BBC to re-engineer ‘iPlayer’ to work with Apple Macs – April 18, 2007
BBC plans to take on Apple’s iTunes with ‘iPlayer’ – March 07, 2007
British citizens: e-petition Prime Minister regarding Mac compatibility for BBC ‘iPlayer’ – February 22, 2007
Ask the BBC make upcoming iPlayer on-demand service Mac compatible – February 01, 2007


  1. I don’t consider 2 years for a Mac OS X compatible player to be “reasonable” in any dictionary of the English language, Queen’s or American. If Opera can release concurrent versions of its browser in multiple platforms, so can other companies.

    MDN MW: include
    ‘Nuff said.

  2. The BBC have been let off the hook. A vague commitment and random timeline. Nothing will happen within 2 years for sure.

    Why the hell couldn’t the BBC use iTunes? Did Apple block them access? Is the on-demand service free or doesn’t it require a subscription?

  3. More of my tax (aka licence fee) money down the drain.

    BBC’s mostly a pig-dog propaganda machine, just about let off the hook by the quality of Radio 4, Radio 3, World Services and BBC2.

    Oh all right… Doctor Who’s OK too.


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  4. This is ridiculous. Just copy ABC’s model for online play and license your stuff to iTunes if you want to sell copies. You save money on research and development and you have a proven model that’s cross platform capable. Morons.

  5. Biting my tongue…but here’s why no iTunes:

    “The service – which will launch later this year – allows viewers to watch programmes online for seven days after their first TV broadcast,” The Beeb reports. “Episodes can also be downloaded and stored for up to 30 days.”

    They want to maintain control of the content. Eh, fair enough. It is theirs…

  6. Fsck the beeb, ask any resident of the UK about their TV and they’ll say that Channel 4 (a non-profit free ad-based channel), is more important.

    Better drama, better comedy, better films.

    However, Channel 4’s on demand service (4oD), which shows all their content, free and online is Windows only, with Channel 4 blaming Apple for not offering good enough DRM.

    Steve Jobs needs to get his finger out, offer something to these guys that gives us feature comparity with Windows DRM (spit), instead of arrogantly pointing all potential contributors to iTunes.

    We’re being left behind guys, at least in the UK, where a sizable proportion of Apple’s sales are coming from.

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