The long anticipated BBC iPlayer iPad and Android apps have finally arrived earlier today. Response has so far been subdued, with most complaining that the apps don’t bring anything new to the table. Nevertheless, we checked out the iPad version and were quite impressed.
While it is possible to create a UK iTunes account and download the BBC iPlayer app, content will still only play from within the UK. The same IP-based location detection mechanism that exists in its web counterpart is employed here in an annoyingly similar fashion. It’s interesting to note that radio content will also not play outside the UK on the app, while its freely available on the iPlayer web version.
In typical BBC style the app itself, or at least the iPad version, is really nice. It’s clean, simple to use, and full of great imagery. Users can browse by category or use the organic search feature. They can also browse by Featured, or Most Popular programmes, and can tag content to Favourites for later viewing. It’s all very simple and usable.
Browsing the app is fast but we can’t make any judgements here on content playback speeds. From our first view of the app, however limited, we are thoroughly impressed. We’ve included a few screenshots below. Share your thoughts in the comments.