BBC Unveils Redesigned iPlayer For The Living Room

The BBC is sure

that almost half of people watching its catch-up content will be doing so on

connected devices in the next few years, and has therefore launched a revamped

version of its iPlayer, designed for TVs, set-top boxes and Blu-ray players.

The new iPlayer

will be available from today on the PlayStation 3 and is currently being

adapted by manufacturers for a range of other devices.

According to the

latest Communications Market Report from Ofcom, only 10 per cent of

TVs can go online, however in the last six months the BBC has seen a five fold growth of iPlayer on TV.

“At this rate of growth, in the next few years

we could well see over half of iPlayer use directly on the living room TV,”

said Daniel Danker, the BBC’s general manager of programmes and on demand.

New BBC iPlayer

While iPlayer is

available on over 300 devices already, the presentation is inconsistent and on

some devices, very frustrating to navigate. The new iPlayer will offer a more

consistent platform making it a lot easier for users to navigate using their

remote controls.

The new interface

will also offer better personalisation so that iPlayer will remember your

searches and preferences to allow your access the programmes you want, quicker.

“It feel like TV,

it’s much easier to use and it’s more personal. This is designed from the

ground up for televisions,” said Gideon Summerfield, the BBC’s executive

product manager for iPlayer on TV.

While a huge

variety of set-top boxes, Blu-ray players and TVs will be getting the newly

redesigned iPlayer, one major player won’t be getting it any time soon. “Sky

today remains a closed platform,” Danker said. This is in contrast to

competitors Virgin Media and BT who both offer iPlayer as part of their