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Multi-Platform BBC iPlayer Live


Multi-Platform BBC iPlayer Live

It's been a long time coming, but the multi-platform iPlayer is finally here. Yes folks, the one that works not only on windows XP and Vista, but also Mac OSX (10.5 and 10.4), Fedora Core 8, Ubuntu 7.10 and Open Suse 10.3. Feel free to crack open the champagne now.

Currently in Beta and available via the iPlayer Labs, the new download manager is built on Adobe's AIR platform which means that, in theory, any OS that supports that could be added to the list also supported by the iPlayer, eventually. A download manager that works on the Linux installs used by many netbooks would be pretty awesome, if you ask me.

Currently there are a few catches to using the new download manager, foremost of which is many programmes aren't actually working with it. However, that should improve over time - the new manager was only released yesterday after all. Doubtless some fusspots will criticise the use of DRM, too, but given this is free content I'm disinclined to agree.

The trial period for the new AIR-based download manager will last until, roughly, February next year (making a nice birthday present for me). If you're reading this on a Mac, I suggest you head over to the BBC Labs, enable the new download manager and get downloading!


BBC iPlayer Labs.

BBC iPlayer Air download.


December 19, 2008, 4:18 pm

Brilliant news. I'm a Vista user so doesn't affect me directly, but its nice that the Mac and *nix users can finally get in on the action too.


December 19, 2008, 4:29 pm

Usually I just watch the shows in the browser but I thought I would try this new download manager... thinking I would get the shows sooner. I installed the air app and I thought it was broken, there was no download option on any of the shows I wanted to watch. Alas no, it's just that there are no shows on YESTERDAY which have a download option.

So it's utterly useless. Is this just on the new air app, or does it take days for the download option to appear on the normal download app?

Plus where is HD? This is bittorrent based, therefore there's no excuse for them not to have HD versions... we've paid for them.

mr dog

December 19, 2008, 5:25 pm

Jesus wept. its always amazes me how soon people start complaining when something like this comes along. Did they not mention it was still Beta? Do we get high definition versions of programming anywhere else? and when they do start offering HD (which they are trialling now as far as i know) how long will it be before people start complaining about downloads taking too long or bandwidth being hogged by overkill HD versions of In The Night Garden?

Be thankful you do have it, in Germany there is nothing, which is why when i go home for Christmas later on, it will be the iMac and iPlayer I will be hugging first, right before i fill my Zen up with all that glorious UK content, have i got news for you? damn right son.


December 19, 2008, 5:55 pm

I'm not complaining about the "beta-ness" of it. I'm complaining there is nothing to download... I want to watch never mind the buzzcocks, it's available for streaming, yet it's not available to download. Is it available on the non beta download software in a timely manner? If so there's no problem, if it's always the case that there's a days of lag before you can download something then the service is basically useless to me.

Ben 3

December 19, 2008, 6:18 pm

As far as I can tell, programs put on iPlayer since the new Download manager are avaliable (like Buzzcocks and the latest Doctor Who episode). Programs loaded before yesterday are not avaliable on the new Download (but are on the old one).

So give it a week and everything should be online

Mike 11

December 19, 2008, 6:47 pm

Ubuntu 7.10? Not even 8.04LTS? Shurely shome mishtake...

Nick 6

December 19, 2008, 7:16 pm

Intel based Macs only, why a processor can make such a difference when it comes to software for a machine I will never know. Time to buy yet another machine.


December 19, 2008, 9:28 pm

Every heard of instruction sets?




December 19, 2008, 9:53 pm

It uses Adobe Air.... thanks but no thanks.


December 20, 2008, 1:46 am

Why, what's the matter with Adobe Air? (opens can of worms?).


December 20, 2008, 1:59 am

One program guaranteed to download onto your Mac or Linux iPlayer:


Shame it's Watchdog though :(


December 23, 2008, 11:40 pm

Thought I should report in with this: Although I have a Power PC based Mac G4, and the iplayer website does say that the Mac download version only works for Intel based Macs, I thought I'd try it anyway, and, do you know what? It works fine!

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