back to article Aunty squirts serendipity into TV apps

The BBC is piping stuff into ever more devices - showing off delivery to a Samsung Connected TV today. Actually, the first thing that appeared on the giant Samsung - literally a wall-to-wall experience - was a Socialist Worker placard emblazoned with "Smash The Tories" from a "Save Our Pensions" demonstration. It's the big …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Colin Millar

    wishful thinking?

    The second TV in homes is still a TV - by a truly massive degree.

    His figures really only mean that fondelslabs are installing iPlayer at a greater rate than PCs - which is hardly surprising given that it is one of the core reasons for buying the things.

  2. Anonymous Coward

    Percentages to prove what, exactly?

    First, I'm assuming "growth" is about iPlayer downloads/installations...

    If the percentages are showing that fondleslabs are the hot take up item, then it makes sense using those percentages to show that growth, in comparison with other platforms.

    To go from that to "fondleslabs are becoming the second TV", however, is a bit strong, isn't it?

    Such a claim would make more sense if the figures given were actuals, showing, say, 2.5 million fondleslabs are using iPlayer compared to 35,000 PCs. Then such a claim can be siad to stand up.

    Perhaps a new headline for this article would be better: "Parent uses its News agency skills to self-aggrandise by 'getting down with the hip tech'..."

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Oh brilliant.

    More excuses for the Beeb to lobby the government in a few years saying "but the TV comes over the Internet now, so obviously you should pay a license to have any form of telecommunications whatsoever!"

    Fuck off Auntie, you decrepit old hag.

  4. Steve Coburn

    Growth Rate v Absolute Numbers.

    Were any figures given concerning absolute number of devices? A 1% growth rate for 100,000 devices (1,000) is far more impressive than a 100% growth rate for 10 devices (10).

    1. CoffeeFueled

      Not quite

      Since the license doesn't actually apply to all tvs (just all tvs which are actively used to receive transmissions - those which are not used in that way are exempt) I doubt they'll manage to push the internet one through.

      Even if they do we'll have a little warning before-hand, since they'll have to get the license to apply to televisions which aren't used for transmissions first. Then I'm sure someone'll be setting up an ISP which specifically doesn't provide the iPlayer.

      Not that I wouldn't like to see them wiped out of course.

    2. Sir Cosmo Bonsor


      And if they could stop using my license fee to incessantly advertise - for that is what it is - Twitter, that'd be nice too.

    3. jai

      why downloads/installations?

      Surely they are able to tell what type of iPlayer installation is playing the content? Whether it is on a tv, or pc or mobile device.

      So these figures could easily be the growth in usage, not just installation.

    4. a cynic writes...

      They could just add a paywall to the live iplayer stream.

      That's if they actually bother - whilst I do watch a lot online that's usually because SWMBO is watching some godawful melodramatic drivel on the other side. I don't think TV is going away anytime soon.

    5. SuccessCase

      Whilst the Reg do often headline grab

      Here Andrew is just reporting what the New Media Chief at the BBC has said. If he said this conversationally then it's hardly Andrew's fault there isn't more qualifying data, but it is still news that this guy rates tablets only as second to PC's even if there is no unambiguous qualifying data. It's news simply because of who has said it. But yes it would be nice to get the underlying data. It's probably backed up by the numbers because these kind of BBC execs live by the numbers.

      1. Andrew Orlowski (Written by Reg staff)

        Re: Whilst the Reg do often headline grab

        Yep. Becoming the second screen isn't the same as saying it is the seco d screen now - it plainly isn't and has some way to go. And chatting afterwards, he agrees that for lots of immersive, classic kinds of shows, there's only one screen.

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      If Nigel Mansell comes over my Gaff

      And wheelspins over my lawn, churning up my grass, I'd say "OI NIGEL, NO !"

      (in joke for those who remember it)

      1. DF118
        Thumb Up

        Re: Nigel Mansell

        Thanks. Put it better than I ever could.

        The original AC's BS rant got my heckles right up.

    7. Ian Yates


      The licence already applies to computers receiving live streams.

      Long live the Beeb

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

  5. Yamal Dodgy Data

    serendipitous beeb slab

    "....the first thing that appeared on the giant Samsung ... was a Socialist Worker placard emblazoned with "Smash The Tories"... "

    oh well, at least it's a change from the usual BBC thermageddon propaganda

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      BBC? Propaganda? Nevar!

      The BBC is a perfectly unbiased source of news. Absolutely. There is no agenda anywhere whatsoever. The BBC produces news entirely independantly of any human interaction at all, and as such is utterly flawless.

      And in other news, a tax on all forms of telecommunications has been decided to be a really good idea!


    2nd TV in 2011?

    This article is just silly.

    Who has a $600 tablet as a second TV? If you are well off then a tablet is going to be your 4th or 5th TV. If you are not well off then you are not going to be blowing $600 on a tablet.

    No. You will end up with the 80s working class equivalent: an old hand-me-down portable Black & White TV. Either that or you will have real TVs in the house and no interest in "slumming it".

    Can't see the Osbournes using an iPad as a second TV. I wouldn't for the same reasons.

  7. QuackingPlums

    If I had to choose, I'd keep Auntie every time

    The BBC is one of the few things we've still got left to be proud of in this country - I would much rather my contribution to the licence fee is spent on innovating tech like this than spending it on more cop/medical/sci-fi/historically inaccurate shows from the US that inevitably get cancelled before they reach a satisfactory conclusion (or in some cases, even start to make sense; Lost, I'm looking at you...)

    I pay more in a month to Sky than I do to the BBC in a year and all that gets me is more channels of mindless cr*p! If I didn't need to point all my furniture at something I'd get rid of my TV tomorrow, but even then I'd still feel that the licence fee was value for money.

    The day the BBC gets sold or outsourced to another private organisation will be a sad day, although I'm sure it's coming...

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Did I read this correctly?

    The BBC developed the app for the Samsung TV? That's Samsung's job, surely? The BBC should just provide the APIs, documentation, and accreditation. In fact, the Beeb should be charging for their services. Otherwise, they are just providing free consultancy to make commercial products more attractive to customers - courtesy of the licence payers.

    1. SuccessCase

      I'm not sure your interpreting the assertion correctly Jedidiah

      It's not about how many tv's and tablets you have in your house. It's about media consumption. Tablets are very effectively competing for what is called entertainment time. It's in that context they are becoming or indeed have already become the "second tv." There are now many market research reports backing this up. So it's not that the tablet is being propped up somewhere and being used like it's a TV, it's that people are getting their entertainment through tablets, which includes a multitude of media including video.

    2. StooMonster

      Just because you can't see it, doesn't make it untrue

      I just look at my kids, iPad is definitely their second television, in fact, some days it's their only television ... and if it's not that, it's a laptop.

      "If you are well off then a tablet is going to be your 4th or 5th TV", I think you'll find there's an inverse relationship between wealth and size and number of televisions in a household. ;)

    3. DF118


      "The Samsung app the BBC demonstrated was built in HTML so the corporation can roll out the same content to lots of these proprietary TVs without great expense."

  9. Obvious Robert

    Second TV

    "The tablet is essentially becoming the second TV in the home"

    I don't believe a word of it. I still don't know anyone, either friends family or colleagues, who has a tablet of any description. It won't stay that way forever, but as tablets are a very new market compared to the other platforms, it doesn't take many people starting watching iPlayer on their iPad to get a growth rate of 67%.

    Let us know when 67% of all iPlayer usage is via a tablet, then you can make such bold claims.

    1. SuccessCase

      The claims have good foundation

      Tablet growth is phenomenal. The iPad alone is the fastest selling consumer device in history, bar the Kinnect before this last Christmas. But the difference being, accepting expected seasonal variation, tablet sales are continuing to ramp up and the rate of increase will be sustained. They are by far the biggest earning. By the end of this year it is predicted there will be as many iPads sold as xBoxes over from it's launch up to today (and that for a device costing significantly more). And up to 68 million in 2012. And that's just iPad. With Android and the rest you can near enough double those figures.

      The rate of iPlayer usage amongst tablet users is far higher than with PCs - can't find the citation for that one now, but I can guarantee it's true.

    2. StooMonster

      Guess it depends on your "circles"

      I don't know many households without an iPad -- friends and family, all got 'em, and sometimes more than one.

    3. Dave Lawton

      Re : Second TV

      I don't believe a word of it. I still don't know anyone, either friends family or colleagues, who has a tablet of any description. It won't stay that way forever, but as tablets are a very new market compared to the other platforms, it doesn't take many people starting watching iPlayer on their iPad to get a growth rate of 67%.

      Please forgive my inattention, since iPlayer (Flash) can't run on the iPad, then it has to be a 'native' app, so why is the mainstream version still Flash based ?

      1. Anonymous Coward

        iplayer on iPad

        Wrong... the iplayer can run fine on an iPad (there's an app for that!).. what you cannot do at the moment is to stream it using Airplay (for some reason only known to BBC lawyers)

        1. Dave Lawton

          Re: iplayer on iPad

          > Wrong... the iplayer can run fine on an iPad (there's an app for that!)

          Did you read wot I wrote ?

          iPlayer (Flash) for Linux, Mac, & Windows was the thing I was asking about.

          If a dedicated application can be produced for iPad, & Android, how come we still have to use the Flash crap.

  10. Jimbo in Thailand
    Paris Hilton

    Ironic move by the BBC since...

    ...I can confirm that the BBC censors some online content, no matter how benign, to foreign IP addresses, such as here in Thailand. Maybe the BBC "deciders" (pardon the Bushism) are just emulating their media-mafia cronies across the big pond in the United States of Corporatism.

    BCC TV apps...serendipity my least to those of us with 'alien' IP addresses!

    Paris? She's crying because she can't decide which of the two most heinous blights orchestrated against the great unwashed masses is worse, Corporatism or Zionism.

    1. Fred Dibnah Silver badge

      @ ironic move

      The licence fee is paid by UK TV-watchers, not overseas ones, so it's perfectly reasonable for the Beeb to restrict access from outside the UK.

      1. Jimbo in Thailand


        NO! It's not perfectly reasonable. I'm talking about content posted on the World Wide Web, not local UK programming. Fred, you do know what 'World Wide Web' stands for don't you? I would never expect to receive local BBC TV ad based programming here in the Land of Smiles, but that's not always the case. The US networks are even worse, even occasionally censoring news stories outside the country, which I've documented. Some people try to justify it by claiming that corporate censorship is OK because of 'contractual obligations'. All I can tell you is that censorship is censorship, whether government imposted or corporate.

        1. Ian Yates


          What do you mean by "censor"? I had assumed the same as Fred in that you meant restricting access (which is fair), but if you mean posting edited content based on IP address, that's something different.

          Rather than screaming bloody murder, have you contacted them to find out why? I'd be interested, personally.

          I'd guess it's either licensing restrictions (the Beeb content providers can impose odd restrictions about what can be broadcast where) or to do with editing in order to fit in to designated segments for Beeb Worldwide. But if it's truly censorship as you say, that's concerning.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Ah, the joy of VPNs..

      "I can confirm that the BBC censors some online content, no matter how benign, to foreign IP addresses"

      Damn, you just discovered why I have a linux VM hosted in the UK :-). It's not actually for iBBC stuff, it's more to stop those stupid ads on BBC News. I find it irritating to be sold life insurance before images of a major disaster are shown. Call me strange, but I think it's inappropriate..

  11. blatny93

    Adam Curtis is what television was made for!

    Adam Curtis is a genius! I don't remember being stimulated since A.J.P.Taylor 'talked to the screen'. And, just when you despair of the BBC along comes 'Watched over by machines of loving grace' and The Shadow Line - of course, bumped off to BBC 2 because the BBC knows that the hoi polloi, tou stupid by 'alf, won't bother watching. But Clarks 'Civilisation', Dennis Potters hits and misses, and Adam Curtis and all his ouevre (sic!). To make television think! And thus we too!

    1. Asylum Sam

      amen to that

      the most interesting part of this story is the sneaky link to the curtis blog at the end. Bravo

  12. Dharmesh Mistry

    Thye end of Flash Player ?

    Did I read this right? Is the significance of building this in HTML (presumably HTML5) that it is not using Flash player and therefore more cross platform and without having to pay Adobe fee's?

This topic is closed for new posts.

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019