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back to article BBC Trust boots 'Open iPlayer' plans into touch

The BBC Trust has shelved a plan that would have allowed broadcasters such as Channel 4, ITV and Five to share the Beeb's iPlayer. The so-called "Open iPlayer" project was meant to establish a new commercial service separate from BBC Worldwide, that would licence the Corporation's hugely popular video-on-demand technology to …

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Boo hiss!!

err thats it.

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Stop

Sod iPlayer...

What we need is Hulu!

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Dumb as a couple of diminutive bits of wood

I pay the license fee (yeah, fool me) partly to fund the common broadcast infrastructure and the development of related technology.

BBC R&D were instrumental in developing the DVB broadcast system. They should be doing the same thing now, developing an integrated, efficient and fast internet based broadcast and on-demand system for the internet.

A bit of effort putting points of presence into all the major ISPs, a common software platform, and a bit of common sense, and we could have an open platform for any of the channels, with the same basic access rights as currently exist for the over-the-air system.

And as the state funded broadcaster, the BBC should be at the forefront of this.

We could have the TV system of the future, but unfortunately we have a bunch of old fogeys who seem easily confused by the technology holding everyone else back.

Such a missed opportunity.

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Badgers

A couple of points

I don't like the "Open" tag. It makes it sound like Open Source, which it certainly isn't, It's just a web streaming platform that they are thinking about commercialising.

Besides, I wonder if the reportedly huge numbers of people using the iPlayer platform is a massive fabrication. I sincerely wonder if they have included the number of times people play the embedded video clips on the BBC website in the usage statistics.

Any ideas how to word that on a FOI request?

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Paris Hilton

A principal principle?

I am sure there must be a principal principle somewhere about stuff like this (developed with public money by a public service provider and so, (should be?) available to all public service providers provided add-on, additional or additionality of costs are avoided?)

Would, for example, i-Player provide a suitable starting model for n+1 development aimed at mobile devices?

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Alert

Project Kangeroo - via an alternative route?

Anyway, where is the iPlayer app for iPhone/iPod touch?

I have the 'web app' but would like a native one..

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WTF?

Don't know if anyone noticed, but...

when they first launched iPlayer they were told they couldn't fund it using the license fee as it was available to non-license fee payers as well.

So where does the license fee and value for the sap^H^H^Hpeople that pay it even enter into it?

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Covering their asse(t)s

If you were a BBC Trougher, and you thought that in a couple of years or so you could be torn from the public teat and told to find your commercial way forward, you would not want your competitors lining up to say "Where is it? You promised it to us, now hand it over" in respect of your technology (or your toenails).

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Does this mean...

I remember reading articles in the Register when iPlayer was first developed saying that the amount of money spent developing a flash player was ridiculous. Does this interest mean it's actually quite good?

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Silver badge
WTF?

@ Alistair McFarlane re. Don't know if anyone noticed, but

"when they first launched iPlayer they were told they couldn't fund it using the license fee as it was available to non-license fee payers as well."

BBC radio broadcasts are available to non license fee payers, all over the UK and all over the world. That argument should have been stamped on and shot and buried as soon as it was uttered.

Who said that anyway?

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Anonymous Coward

Canvas

Does that not shoot that idea down aswell

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Boffin

Hulu / YouTube

>Sod iPlayer... #

> What we need is Hulu!

Yeah right, exactly what we need - another near monopoly US mega internet corp who do all their R&D in California and keep a salesman, some bloke to change the LAN backup tape and a cleaner in the European office.

Why shouldn't the BBC be congratulated on building a world class TV streaming platform? Is there really a problem spinning off iPlayer to allow them to carry a range of content? Why can't they white label and license iPlayer to ITV/C4 anyway?

I wish the BBC well in building a global TV pay-per-view jukebox that fairly rewards UK programme makers and offers jobs on a cutting edge project to UK programmers. Sadly though once again (as happened with music downloads) i see the lawyers and execs inhibiting them with the net result we all end up consuming from google.

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Pint

If they offered BBC content via the iPlayer

To the rest of the world, for the same price per user as the License fee, they could fund pretty much what they liked. :-)

Sure, there will be abusers, but the majority would leap at the chance to access all BBC content, legally, for <£150/year.

One less pint of fizzy lager per week..

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Paris Hilton

from one AC to another AC

Yes.

Agreed.

What we (collectively that is) do well somehow seems to be hidden into a void of unattainability (new title for Dr Who? :-) )

How the beeb could be bringing it all together rather than splitting it asunder?

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Is it that hard to make an iPlayer rival?

It's just a Flash app that plays MP4 files coupled to lots of expensive bandwidth. I don't see why the BBC's competitors would struggle to replicate it.

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Silver badge

Kangaroo was mugged!

Fact is, Kangaroo was in the interest of the British viewer - all your shows in one place as opposed to striped across 4+ websites. That was killed largely by the whining of a few groups of vested interests who contribute fuck all to the quality programming online model. Eric Schmidt has admitted that User Generated Content (UGC-most of youtube, the bits you stumble across looking for the pirated good stuff) is a total lemon and that nobody wants to sponsor/advertise on UGC. YouTube lost best part of half a BILLION dollars last year, thanks to UGC, and so is courting the decent content providers like Channel 4. Instead of a homegrown tailor-made quality and convenient platform for our shows, we're going to hand the ad-rev to the yanks. Plain stupid.

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Linux

Science

BBC, stop messing about and make the damn thing Free and Open Source under the GPL or other copyleft license. It's about time that organisations making software from the public purse actually engage in the scientific field of software development and stop trying to bleed the stone of online media distribution.

Stop trying to pretend your a business, your a public organisation with a higher calling than profit and bonuses.

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Heart

Yes, iPlayer is that good...

Superficially it seems no different to C4 or ITV offerings, but in practise it has all the little things (resuming my play where I left off, remembering what I've last watched) which make using it a delight rather than a pain in the bum.

Oh, plus C4 just won't work on my linux box downstairs (it persists in putting the video slightly out of the video window) whereas iPlayer not only works perfectly, but also just released a new interface especially for those of us driving our main TVs from it!

Personally, if they can commercially license it, and use that money to pay for further development I'm all for it - why use my license fee to pay for it if they don't have to.

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Anonymous Coward

That F*cking Australian Again

For those of you with short memories there is a little history behind this. Orginally Aunty wanted to share the iPlayer with the other terrestrial broadcasters, but the dirty digger raised objections. So the whole thing got stuck on the back burner while his whinging^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H objections were investigated. During which period the other broadcasters developed or bought in their own on demand services. So in the end the common platform was unworkable.

The idea of a one stop shop for all your TV catch up is a sound one, but when all the providers are using different technologies why would three of them want to invest in changing over to another? Had they not already got their own OD services I'm sure the other broadcasters would have been more than happy to invest in setting themselves up on iPlayer.

I'm pretty damned sure that the dirty digger knows full well that his many complaints to Ofcon, the culture secretary and other parts of central government won't be upheld. What he expects them to do is create breathing space and fuck everybody else up. Were he an ordinary member of the public, he would no doubt be classed as a "vexatious complainant" and ignored.

*As usual he was throwing his toys out of the cot over the fact that he thinks that Sky should receive 50% of the licence fee, but continue to charge subscriptions, run advertising and be unaccountable. He didn't object to the joint platform on the grounds that he wanted in, he objected to the fact they the BBC were offering something for free that he wanted to charge for. He still objects to other broadcasters' OD services because he feels they detract from his Sky+ service. Anybody get the impression that he thinks a monopoly is a good thing as long as he controls it?

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Silver badge

iPlayer - really good!

Works on the other half's Vista box, my Linux box, and has a dedicated UI for the Wii.

It's just works, and it works well.

Well done the BBC. A real shame that ITV and C4 cannot use the same platform.

I can really believe in the viewing figures being quoted. Most people I know have watched it at some stage.

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Silver badge

Um, these people have managed it

http://www.tvcatchup.com/

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