It’s been promised for a while but finally the BBC has announced the roll-out of high definition content on the iPlayer – for Windows, Linux and Macs.
Initially such programmes as Dragons’ Den, Kerwhizz and Doctor Who will be making the jump to high definition. HD video is encoded at around 3.5Mbps at – oddly enough – a resolution of 1,280 x 720 pixels. It’s not exactly Blu-ray, but it should be a definite improvement over the standard definition video currently available.
The iPlayer is also introducing dynamic stream switching. Based on the bandwidth available, the iPlayer will vary the quality of the streamed video. The streaming player will also be getting resizable windows – which have been in testing in the iPlayer Labs for a while.
HD video will also be made available for Virgin Media and the PlayStation 3 at some point, but there’s no specific timescale.