January 18, 2008

BBC iPlayer coming to Virgin Media "in the spring"

According to a news story on Digital Spy, the BBC is saying that the port of its iPlayer to cable TV is a top priority and likely in the spring. Although the iPlayer has had a long, protracted birth, anyone who's used the streaming version launched just before Christmas will know that this is a simple but impressive interface for video on demand content, and will be a big improvement over the current EPG for BBC VoD programming.
Taking the speed of the software demoed here with a pinch of salt (presumably running on a dedicated PC rather than a set top box), this demo video may whet your appetites further (apologies for the distinctly non-HD picture quality!)


Michael said...

This looks extremely cool; very slick and easy to use (I can’t believe it’ll be that fast though). What concerns me is it this fragments the VOD offering on cable, are we going to have to go through the EPG for all non-BBC VOD, and through the iPlayer for BBC content. If so, this is going to be a real nuisance.

demented said...

It looks cool and could be a powerful addition to VM platform. Unfortunately what I worry about is bandwidth constraints. We hear of all these rumours about 4HD, ITV HD, this iPlayer coming along in "spring 2008" and they are all about the same time. I hope this means there's a great deal we're not being told and that bandwidth will be upped around that time to cater for all these things, otherwise iPlayer will be a drain on resources and we'll get endless complaints of denial of new channels.

Nialli said...

You only have to look at the US cable networks to see that bandwidth should not be a problem for Virgin. Okay, so their dominant market position has allowed them to maintain their infrastructure investment where it should be, but surely Virgin have plans to expand and grow to meet growing public demand? The technology is there, it's just a matter of investing. Mercifully, they haven't (to my knowledge) compromised the existing channels bandwidth to accomodate new channels - that's one thing to be grateful for. Not sure about the iPlayer - I agree that it'll confuse viewers, and the YouTube clip ain't running on a V+ box, let along a legacy Pace one.