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BBC iPlayer for Windows Phone? [Updated]

Update: WPCentral reader uuf05 got in touch with the BBC and requested reasoning as to why they haven't released an app for the platform yet. You can view their reply in his comment below. Here's the main snippet:

The BBC want to bring BBC iPlayer to as many audiences as possible, across a range of devices. Unfortunately, as the Windows Phone 7 doesn't support HLS or Adobe Flash, the formats we use for streaming videos, we can't make BBC iPlayer available on this phone at the moment.

So until the platform supports BBC's used formats (HLS or Flash) it seems the BBC wont bring us an app to gain access, which is a shame. What do you all make of this?

Read the full story after the break...

The BBC iPlayer, a superb catch-up and on-demand service, streams TV shows and radio to users across multiple platforms including mobile devices (iOS and Android), tablets, consoles (PS3), computers and televisions. One thing we're aware of is that Microsoft and the BBC haven't seen eye-to-eye with previous plans to bring the service to Xbox Live. The BBC pulled back from the proposed deal due to Microsoft wanting to limit access to Gold subscribers only.

Another platform we're aware of that currently doesn't feature an app for that is Windows Phone. A reader over at WMPU got in contact with the BBC and queried as to whether or not the broadcasting company has any plans for developing an app to bring the service to Windows Phone. Unfortunately, the reply was as expected - pretty bland:

"Thank you for contacting the BBC iPlayer Support Team.

I understand that you’d like to know if the BBC iPlayer service will be compatible with the Windows OS for mobile handsets.

We’re currently looking at many ways to expand and increase the services we offer however I’d be unable to confirm the present research into the compatibility with this OS. However your comments are most welcome as we’re driven by user reaction."

So is there an official app in development? Most likely no, but there will surely be a spark to kick-start the process when a significant amount of WP7 owners begin requesting detail from the BBC or if Microsoft's platform continues to grow in UK marketshare.

If you'd like to get in touch with the BBC about a potential app, feel free to contact them although we can't be sure how much "user reaction" they require.

Via: WMPU

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Reader comments

BBC iPlayer for Windows Phone? [Updated]

21 Comments

iPlayer for WP7? WANT.PLEASE BBC, PRETTY PLEASE!Plus, the iPlayer has a great look which would be complimented on WindowsPhone.

I have just made a complaint to the bbc:Iv been waiting for the BBC to release an 'app' for windows phone 7 (wp7)for a long time now. Im extremly suprised you still have no plans on providing the third ecosystems users AKA wp7 users a method to access the bbc iplayer. Wp7 useres like user of Android and iOS pay the license yet we have no app? come on what is going on?? Please release an app for wp7

Surely just making the videos available in html5 on the mobile site would work? They've made all videos available in flash and quicktime.

I got a reply to my complaint:Dear Mr KhanReference CAS-964774-K3NQLLThank you for contacting the BBC iPlayer Support Team.I understand that you’d like to know if the BBC iPlayer service will be available on Windows supported Phones.The BBC want to bring BBC iPlayer to as many audiences as possible, across a range of devices. Unfortunately, as the Windows Phone 7 doesn't support HLS or Adobe Flash, the formats we use for streaming videos, we can't make BBC iPlayer available on this phone at the moment.Once again thank you for contacting us.Kind RegardsPhilip YoungBBC Audience Serviceswww.bbc.co.uk/iplayerNB This is sent from an outgoing account only which is not monitored. You cannot reply to this email address but if necessary please contact us via our webform quoting any case number we provided.

Which is entirely up to BBC should they wish to go down this road. Your comment makes it out as though it's our fault they haven't developed an app for the platform. What has WMPU got to do with anything?The BBC said that Windows Phone doesn't support HLS, that's what we reiterated. This doesn't reflect the views of both myself and WPCentral, but is merely what the BBC replied with. Are they lazy? Could well be, or are they not too familiar with Silverlight? Would being snarky in the post above help matters? No.

I am just pointing out facts that you should already know about though. This just shows BBC are being pure lazy and giving out incorrect information, as well being baised against Microsoft (nothing new there). It wasn't aimed at you nor WPCentral. All I am saying is that nothing is impossible now with the Mango update. I say you should and many others really should show some demand toward the BBC (we are paying their license fees after all), and give them the correct facts.

Biased against Microsoft? The development team at the BBC are actually nothing of the sort, given that almost every computer the BBC has runs Windows.

Doesn't much matter to me. It negates the standard making it a non-compliant app. Make it compliant with the standards then we'll talk. Zune is better anyway.

This is why microsoft needs to bring features to users and the market quicker. Flash support has been missing since the beginning people have been asking for it since then. The mango update could have used it. IE9 is still meh. With that much time since the initial release they really need to step up their game. One of factors to draw people in from iphone users is windows phone could support flash. They need to get with the program. The phone is definitely more improved with mango but they don't have time to play catch up. They need to pick up their pace. The are losing any potential developers such as bbc that want to code their stuff in flash. Microsoft's strategy should be targeting as many people as possible.

The BBC has no trouble supporting Apple iOS platforms, including iPhone and iPad, despite Apple's legendary ban on Flash on those platforms.Reading between the lines, they're saying "we don't want to bother with your platform, so let's just make up some stupid excuse so they'll stop asking us for it."

BBC programmers should have known better that WP doesn't support Adobe flash & HLS. They are the one produce with what is available on WP (Silverlight ) they should stop given flimsy excuse . There is live streaming app working fine on the platform e.g. France 24 News app. It is not only iOS & Android customer that pays TV license we all do. so give us what we deserve even if its only 100 people on the platform .what good for the geese also good for the gander .

Well the good news is that I had the exact same reply, which means they have gone to the trouble of making a stock reply, which means they are getting a lot of requests for wp7.

You know I've had Windows Phone since it was launched, loved it and still do, and the Mango update has given my tired handset an new lease of life.  The lack of iplayer access on the phone is my only gripe, both with Microsoft and the BBC.  I have complained and posted onto BBC forums about the issue, receiving the same sort of responses listed here , but i just don't get it!  Youtube, and MSN video both stream video content to the WP7 with no issues, so what is the issue??  Flash support for WP, as nice as it would be to have, is pobably the wrong way to go as Adobe are pulling the rug from under Flash.  The BBC should be looking to be supporting HTML5 for their video streaming, but I can't also understand why Microsoft haven't "helped" the BBC bring their app to market, surely it would hae been in their interest too, to have one of the worlds best media content avaliable to their mobile platform. 
Come on BBC pull your finger out and give us the iplayer !!!!
:-D