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back to article Beeb rolls out global paid iPlayer app in €urope

Expats or foreigners who own an Apple iPad and are interested in a weekly dose of Brit TV gruel – grisly East End folk, crappy daytime shows or pointless period dramas – should rejoice, as the Beeb is launching an international version of iPlayer. The on-demand service app will be available in 11 European countries in the …

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Eh?

"British licence fee payers can only stream" - the iPlayer Desktop has had download options including 'proper' (or, anyway, better) HD for some while.

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UK iPad iPlayer only streams - Global iPad iPlayer can download

It looks good value for €50 a year IF they keep adding stuff regularly. Some sections (Kids) are a bit thin, but lets wait and see how it develops. It is very smooth and slick - much nicer than the web interface IMHO.

Downloading is a really useful option for iPad - I am going to load it up with kids stuff or the next long car trip (glad I stumped up for the 32Gb iPad now!)

It is nice having whole series on there, cos I have often missed an episode with the UK one-week(ish) offering.

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excellent...

when does the license fee come down? surely the UK isnt subsidising everyone again? <facepalm> so, they can access almost the same stuff as me yet pay considerably less?

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Subsidies

There is a subsidy going on, but it's BBC Worldwide (wholly owned subsidiary of the BBC) monetizing content in order to subsidize the BBC, so that license fee costs do not go up. Just under a quarter of the Beeb's income comes from flogging stuff to foreigners.

I may get downvoted for this, the BBC is a national treasure, much more so than Stephen Fry. It provides a unique voice for Britain in the world, and produces high quality programming, with a requirement to produce educational content, like the excellent natural science programmes produced in the last ten years (Life, Blue Planet, Wild China etc). It must continue to be publicly funded to provide this globally unique situation.

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Anonymous Coward

@Tom

Agreed. The Beeb can produce some amazing TV programmes.

But just take a look at almost everything on BBC3 and a few other channels.

I want my money to be not spent on tripe please. It's not just me being an old fuddy-duddy or anything - some of the Beebs' content is really really bad.

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BBC3

"I want my money to be not spent on tripe please"

I guess that's where the licence fee model falls down. You can't vote with your wallet about what constitutes tripe.

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FAIL

"I want my money to be not spent on tripe please."

One mans "tripe" is anothers "quality". You appear to have forgotten that the Beeb has to cater for all tastes. If you don't like it, switch to BBC4.

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@Tom

Have to seen the tripe on ITV-1 recently? By contrast, the Beeb is in a different world.

Then Channel 5 has taken BB. The only thing to describe that is pure and unadulterated tripe.

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Trollface

I've voted

I stopped paying the licence fee. I understand that the BBC has to cater for all, but I refuse to be infuriated EVERYTIME a sport or news program airs. Why do they insist on 'Press Red' on screen. In the days of old 'Press Text' was never forced on the viewer. I know I can press green to remove it but why should I have to? It's not interactive TV. We all know the RED button exists, enough already.

PS I do not watch Live TV any more, the internet caters for my needs.

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Horses/courses

I'm not a fan of BBC3, but I understand that some people like it. If no-one watches it, they take it off. Except for Songs of Praise, which the Queen makes them show.

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FAIL

Umm...

I can and have been able to download shows to watch offline for a long while. This isn't a euro only feature.

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Facepalm

Folks, read the article

They're not talking about the desktop version!! As the first line of the article ("...who own an Apple iPad...") actually tells you! (Hint: read the article fully before commenting, kthx)

The iPlayer app for iPad in the UK can only stream, it cannot download.

Nice to know that a version of it can download, not so cool that it sounds like we won't be getting it here - the ability to download something to watch later would actually be very handy on an iPad...

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Happy

Sorry

I'd forgotten that the word 'app' is no longer a generic abbreviation for application and may only be used to describe software that runs on the cripplePad (no wonder you can't download stuff).

Mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. I will say three 'Hail Steves' and thrash myself with the power cord of an iPhone.

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Great deal

So if I do the maths, they should be able to offer it at 50 euro less 30% Jobs tax = about £30 a year for Web/Android subscribers - that's a lot cheaper than a licence fee...and they get the archives as well.

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Meh

Yes the service is almost identical - BBC I want my fee back!

OK, so we get:

- Actual broadcast live TV

- iPlayer on more than one platform

- iPlayer catch-up content available immediately

- iPlayer full archives (not small selection like on continent)

- FM radio for pretty much any tastes

but that's definitely not worth an extra £8 a month is it.

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Devil

No

Because one of the AppStore rules is that the app and subscriptions can't be sold for cheaper than in the App Store for other platforms or the web. Apple wants its 30% cut and doesn't want the public to know about it.

I think the BBC have put their foot in it there, they should have called it the iDevice version touchPlayer or something.

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Flame

"....who own an Apple iPad ......."

Bastards. I'm almost tempted to move back to Britain, purely so I can not pay the License Fee in protest at this outbreak of trendy arsehattery.

Thank Satan[1] for Sky...

[1] Definitely his work rather than God's...

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About bloody time.

Waiting 5 years to get a badly dubbed DR Who , or wait 6 years and get a box set that costs 60 Euros. Looks like a good option for me :) Auntie beeb comming out of the stone age at last.

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so where does the revenue go?

according the BBC annual report 2009/2010, their funding is as follows (including Radio)

£3,446m - License fee

£888m Commercial Business (BBC Worldwide and similar)

£293m Government Grants

£112m Other content (overseas rights, concerts etc)

So the % of extra income to off-set the license fee would have to be pretty huge, just to cover half of the license fee at €49.99/year for "selected" content (not all of it remember) the beeb would have to get roughly 30m subscribers !!

The license fee is currently @40p per day per house hold (on average 15p per person/day, or 0.625p/hr)

New DVD £15, lasts @2 hours - watch it 1,200 times for same value

New Album £10 - lasts @1 hour - equal to 66 days of BBC content

Even if you don't like 95% of the BBC's content you are still getting good value for money. I'm always confused by peoples dislike of the license fee, given the content offered by advertising funded alternatives right now, the license fee feels more like an investment in a more educated and aware society than a so called "tax".

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Anonymous Coward

@Cliff

I'm not sure about everyone else - I happen to love a lot of the content from the BBC.

*BUT* the important thing I DO NOT LIKE - is that the licence fee is taken from me at the point of a gun. There is no option *BUT* to pay for it. The only workarounds are a pain, and you're still presumed guilty if you don't play ball.

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@AC: Licence fee

"There is no option *BUT* to pay for it"

Oh yes there is. Don't bother. Some dude that's been fighting for years with them has set up a website that tells you how to go about it. There's always an option.

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Re:- so where does the revenue go? → #

Cliff has it right. By chance have just read news of BSkyB latest reported profits:-

"BSkyB increased its customer base by 426,000 in the year to give it a total of 10,294,000 subscribers.

Average revenue per customer grew £31 to £539"

£539 per customer average!!! And guess what - even if you are fool enough to pay these robbers, you STILL have to watch bloody adverts!!!

My only disappointment is that this article seems to be saying only available on iPad. Why not a full annual subscription version of iPlayer so that all the ex-pats (or people who have to spend large amounts of time working outside the UK) can watch most of UK BBC TV? I am sure this would also attract many non-UK viewers who would love to be able to download and watch the broad range of interesting programming that DOES come out of the BBC - without any BLOODY adverts!

As a well travelled person I challenge anyone with a strong anti-Beeb attitude to live in another country and experience what "freedom" brings you - millions of channels of cheap, useless crap, interrupted every few seconds (after just the opening credits in the case of the USA) with mindless adverts!

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Anonymous Coward

People have strange reasoning powers

| £539 per customer average!!!

I had this argument once with a cow-orker who said that he objected to paying the license fee. I asked him if he had SKY and he said yes. I asked why. he said it was because SKY had all the good stuff and the BBC had nothing (!) good. I said that if he paid, say 2x more to the BBC so that they could afford to pay the ridiculous rates for sporting events and the ridiculous rates for things like The Simpsons, he wouldn't need to pay something like 5x what he paid the BBC in order to get them. Strangely enough, he couldn't see it...

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The upper bound for pricing...

...is the cost of an annual subscription to a VPN provider.

Of course, if you go via the VPN route, you can also view other UK content remotely - not just BBC stuff.

Many modern devices offer native VPN client functionality, which is just the ticket for fooling iPlayer into thinking your IP address is in Britain.

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Fee

People resent the TV Licence Fee for 3 reasons:

1. It is a tax, legally binding and everything.

2. You have to pay it even if you never look at the BBC channels or content. That's disgraceful.

3. It's completely humiliating explaining to foreigners that in the UK you essentially have to buy a licence to watch TV!

It's antiquated and a modern equivalent would be paying Microsoft £150 a year to own a PC even if you never used it or if you did you ran Linux as your OS.

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Is that a fact?

Re: Point 3. Is that a fact? Living in Sweden I have to pay around £200 per year for my TV licence, with a service that is at least 10 times worse than the beeb. I also know for a fact Norway and Denmark are even more expensive. Personally I think the bbc are world leaders in TV programming. Their documentaries are are recognised to be the best in the world, they produce high quality news reporting, sports/athletics coverage that commercial channels wouldn't consider viable as well as fantastic dramas.

You don't know what you've got until you've lost it.

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Meh

Ditto France

See title

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If you live in the UK and never look at the BBC channels, radio or internet sites

You either don't have a TV, are lying, or suck only from the Murdoch teat.

If it's the latter, given you already pay between £240-£720 a year for TV, I think you can afford to pay for that stuff you don't watch.

It is a tax on receiving broadcast TV or radio. If you don't watch broadcast TV, you don't have to pay.

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Pint

Well

I agree with your point entirely, that was a bizarre claim to make about foreigners (how often does that topic of conversation come up? Ever?)

However, UK resellers also pass your details to the TV licencing people.

Our tv license is in my wife's name, she didn't change her maiden name. I bought a PVR in Dixons. Provided address details at the till, despite a discussion as to why that was required. Received a letter in the post about six months later from the TV licensing saying "You bought this PVR on this date, but appear not to have a license at this address"

Believe a phone call sorted it out, but I perhaps had to send an email, can't quite remember.

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Facepalm

There's a licence fee across most of Europe

Lookee here...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Television_licence

Most of Europe actually pays a TV licence in one form or another.

Try a country which doesn't have one, like Spain. Until last year the state channels had government grants and they were a money pit. All channels had ad breaks of 20 minutes and programs which make your brains dribble out of your ears.

Last year they decided to cross-subsidise the state-owned channels with a tax on telecoms providers to remove the adverts and proudly proclaim they had something like the BBC and also drive the value of advertising up for the private companies.

The programs on the state channels are still terrible, the programs on the private channels are still terrible, there are still ad breaks of 20 minutes on the private channels, and the EU wants to knock the cross-subsidy on the head because it's illegal. No Spanish channel produces anything of worth that they can sell abroad with the possible exception of Pocoyo.

You really don't know what you've got with the BBC until you're forced to watch some of the sludge that's out there. It does some quality stuff and forces the private channels to keep their standards up.

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Go

check the video out...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKqOZrqkmxg

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Langauges?

Will the programes be dubbed or subtitled or still in English?

Also will there be a PC version for those none Ipad owners?

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The BBC have stated that it will becoming to other devices in the future

Ipad is just the first device chosen.

The BBC have stated they will be bring it to other devices in the future. I would guest there aim is to at least equal the range of devices the UK iplayer is currently on. Also I believe this is in beta at the moment.

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Beeb to take on world telly

The announcement from BBC Worldwide is that this is the begining of what I presume will become an international subscriber service for BBC content worldwide (or at least the bits that the actors rights licencing allows for).

As funkstain, Chris Cheetham and others have pointed out, the BBC is fantastic VFM - any comparisons with Sky are welcomed since the full Sky meat package comes in at about £600 a year, and you get ads on all the channels. As opposed to the radio, the documentaries, the more than occasional flashes of brilliance in programming and all the other stuff that only the BBC can do because the licence is there.

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Beeble Bauble

Unfortunately you cannot get anything live or possible recent. Only stuff which they have probably deemed fairly worthless; or so it seems perusing the iPlayer on my iPad. Good job there are other ways of getting what I want. Also they are offering some stuff from other companies too like ITV which might be interesting. I like the idea of downloading of a night and watching the next day or so.

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Happy

Not in America, yet!

The Americans would have it too if it wasn't for their daft licensing/contract arrangements - http://t.co/hjdYwew - they'll just have to wait until later ha-ha

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Anonymous Coward

License fee

I'm happy to pay £4 a month, once shared amongst house mates, for advert free TV. Even if I do watch TV about twice a week.

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Make it a volontary subcription

"Tom 38

I may get downvoted for this, the BBC is a national treasure"

If the BBC is that great you wouldn't need to force a entire country to fund it but then again that's how socialists work isn't it

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True, but......

The BBC is the just about the only reason that internet news, and internet TV in this country is predominantly free. Remove the BBC and there really would be nothing standing in Murdoch's way from his dream of subscription utopia.

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Re: Make it a volontary subcription → #

What, you mean like how you choose exactly how all your taxes are spent on a "per case" basis? Defence, Olympics, regional regeneration programs, libraries, swimming pools......

What a crass, idiotic statement !!!

Get a life in the real world

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Anonymous Coward

Do not feed...

...the Tea Party troll, please folks.

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Grr

Well done to the BBC for finally bringing out the international version of iPlayer they've been talking about for...well, years actually. But which stupid bastard decided it should be just for the iPad?

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Fantastic news

Now when's the PS3 version coming, as I don't have a MAC or Windows, so no itunes.

I will gladly pay up for this service.

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FAIL

The USA in debt to China

"Defiant -

....If the BBC is that great you wouldn't need to force a entire country to fund it but then again that's how socialists work isn't it..."

Capitalism is doing so well at the moment.

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Joke

@Jon Smit

"Capitalism is doing so well at the moment."

That's because the Socialists finally spent all of their money.

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Yes

Damn those socialist Lehman Brothers!

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FAIL

its rubbish

so i thought let try it.. it does not work! you down load stuff, if stops working then reboot the ipad and if you luck it work again, but nothing is downloaded..

total crap

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iPad only? F@#~€¬& B%&%$@#?s

That really, really, really, really, really, really, really, annoys me.

Guess I'll just have to keep downloading illegally until they decide to let people who live in Europe and don't have extremely expensive toys play.

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