BBC iPlayer hints at iPhone app including downloads

The BBC has posted a monthly press pack which includes iPlayer imagery for what appears to be a future version of the iPlayer for iPhone.

The monthly press pack is created to provide viewing figures and usage statistics for the iPlayer video on demand service in the UK. iPlayer is a free service provided by the BBC for viewers in the UK to catch up on programming they may have missed.

Within the press pack is a number of different statistics including the confirmation that the October 22 edition of Question Time was the most viewed TV program in October. Mostly due to the inclusion of Nick Griffin, the leader of the British National Party, widely accepted as a fascist and heavily racist political party in the UK. In amongst all the vital statistics is an image of an iPlayer application running on the iPhone (see below). In the image it's clear that there is a downloads option and what appears to be a live stream option. The iPhone in the image is connected to a Wi-Fi network indicating that the Wi-Fi restriction for the current iPlayer website could still be in place.

The BBC has yet to confirm or deny that a native iPhone application will be available but it's clear from this official imagery that it's currently in the works.

Update: The BBC's Nick Reynolds has stated "the images are old images and should not be taken to mean that anything is likely to happen soon."

If you are in the UK and interested in using iPlayer through Media Center or your Xbox 360, Neowin posted a guide earlier this week on how to enable this - unofficially.

Thanks to Jordan Howell for the news tip via Twitter

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25 Comments

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Blah TVcatchup.com is UK only! It's also flash based and doesn't work on the iPhone! Shame on you for getting my hopes up.

no matter what apple do i'm dumping my iphone 3g in january when contract is up (getting new nokia n900). Its took apple 3 releases of the iphone to add features that should have been on the first one. shame really because other wise its a very nice phone

So will I (well not January, some time after). The final straw for me was when they released the skyplayer but only allow you to watch it over WiFi. Yeah, thanks for that, so I can watch it at home where I already have sky? Great

That is actually a network issue not an apple one. For example if you view the message it pops up when you try to play video from BBC over 3G it says it can be done on Vodafone and Three only

Yes, excellent service. Really hope it doesn't get shut down for any reason.

Seems to be legal, but you never know with TV corps... they are usually petty.

Septimus said,
Yes, excellent service. Really hope it doesn't get shut down for any reason.

Seems to be legal, but you never know with TV corps... they are usually petty.

They're only broadcasting free-to-air channels, so hopefully it's all OK. Thanks for the iPhone link too - it's amazing!

Fantastic, wasn't expecting it though!.
You can download programs in the morning, to watch on the go..great :)

I'm sure they will start on an android version later.

Tom W said,
Yeah, if Apple allow this then it will be awesome to be able to watch TV on the go :)

But if this is a "Phone" why would you want to waste battery life watching TV? Then when you go to make an actual "Phone" call the thing's dead.

warwagon said,
But if this is a "Phone" why would you want to waste battery life watching TV? Then when you go to make an actual "Phone" call the thing's dead.

Do you understand the concept of smartphones?

warwagon said,
But if this is a "Phone" why would you want to waste battery life watching TV? Then when you go to make an actual "Phone" call the thing's dead.

Yes! How dare you use your highly-media oriented device for any purpose other than phone calls. You must be mad.

warwagon said,
But if this is a "Phone" why would you want to waste battery life watching TV? Then when you go to make an actual "Phone" call the thing's dead.

I travel on the train to work each day for an hour or so each way. Watching TV etc on my iPhone works well. It uses perhaps 35% of the battery to do so, but I get to work (or home) and just charge it up again.

It's already possible through various unofficial means to download iPlayer videos in all the different qualities available (iPhone right up to HD), but this will make things much more convenient - can't wait!

Android already have an unofficial one called beepPlayer. It doesn't allow downloads, but you can stream over wifi, and 3G fine. Even the live channels.