“The BBC has created a version of the iPlayer that works with both Mac and Linux computers. The two systems, which have been able to stream BBC programmes via the iPlayer for a year, will now be able to handle downloads. The BBC, working with Adobe, has developed the new version, known as BBC iPlayer Desktop,” The Beeb reports.

“The iPlayer is the BBC’s online media player that lets viewers stream programmes for up to seven days after broadcast or download and watch them for up to 30 days,” The Beeb reports.

“When the iPlayer first launched the BBC was criticised for producing versions that only worked with Microsoft’s Windows XP and which used Microsoft’s digital rights management (DRM) system to enforce viewing restrictions,” The Beeb reports. “The BBC’s head of digital media technology, Anthony Rose, who is responsible for delivering the next generation of BBC iPlayer, said the structures put in place by the BBC Trust on how the iPlayer can operate meant DRM was a necessity.”

“‘The BBC Trust said we could make content available for seven or 30 days after broadcast,’ he said. ‘The ability to take things away after some time requires DRM.’ The new version of the iPlayer has been written with Adobe’s AIR technology which aims to make it possible to create applications that can be downloaded to your computer, rather than just embedded in browser web pages as is possible with the widely used Flash software,” The Beeb reports.

“A beta version of the BBC iPlayer Desktop that uses the Adobe AIR technology was made available on 18 December with a finished version likely to be released in February 2009.
The cross-platform nature of Adobe AIR means the iPlayer will work with Open Source and Apple Mac computers ‘out of the box’ on 18 December, said Mr Rose. It fulfilled the Trust’s demand that the iPlayer be ‘platform neutral,’ he said,” The Beeb reports.

The Beeb reports, “Mr Rose said the iPlayer now supported three separate DRM technologies: Microsoft, Adobe, and the OMA standards for mobiles.”

Full article here.

More info via BBC iPlayer Labs ” target=”_blank”>here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Macintosher” for the heads up.]