BBC to launch iPlayer globally; U.S. first via subscription model on Apple iPads

Parallels Desktop 6 for Mac “The BBC is to launch a commercial version of its iPlayer video on demand technology, using a subscription model on Apple iPads and with the US probably the first to receive the service,” Ben Fenton reports for The Financial Times.

“It will be available only outside the UK, where the BBC is not allowed to charge for its content, and marks a new stage in the broadcaster’s move to exploit its content around the world,” Fenton reports. “iPlayer, currently only usable in the UK, [will be] available to iPad owners in certain target markets in the middle of next year.”

Fenton reports, “Luke Bradley-Jones, managing director of, its commercial web operation, …said it was too early to say what the BBC would charge for the global iPlayer, but said it would be a monthly subscription and that the US would be among the first markets to come online. ‘We’re quite bullish about what we can charge, but we are still working out the details,’ he said.”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. If the US iPlayer will only include what’s on the BBC America cable channel it’ll be useless. Subscription payments to watch Star Treck and old James Bond movies? They don’t even have a news broadcast anymore.

  2. @CMS
    There are actually a number of channels from the BBC. There are channels BBC 1 – 4, World News Service, a couple of kids’ channels, etc.

    It’s like subscribing to Disney with everything they own– ABC, ESPN, etc.

    If you have seen the iplayer for BBC, it’s pretty nice. It’s black like the ABC player, but has far, far more on it, with different tabs or sections for thediffent channels. Check out some of the limited content they already offer on iTunes Store TV Programs. BBC has it’s own section there.

  3. As a Brit and longtime enjoyer of the beeb’s iPlayer (in addition to ITV and the other commercial stations’ equivalents) I really hope you guys out there get the service much as we enjoy it, the best telly on the planet, with no adverts. And at a price that allows everyone to access it, ideally free.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.