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BBC iPlayer may pre-download shows in the future
Monday 07 July 2008 11:43:09 by Andrew Ferguson

Interestingly the BBC does not seem to have given up on the download version of the iPlayer. The last stats showed that over eight times as many shows were watched via the streaming player than the Kontiki based download version. The latest developments mentioned on DigitalSpy.co.uk centre around plans to allow people to book downloads in the future, with a scheduling system to allow the user to determine the optimum time to download.

Scheduling for iPlayer downloads offers potential to spread out the load from the service. Whether this would be enough to assuage the concerns of broadband providers over the growing use of video on broadband connections is another matter. For people using a broadband service that provides unmetered overnight usage, it would be a good way to remain on a lower price tariff while using iPlayer.

Shifting a lot of traffic to the overnight off-peak period sounds attractive, but how many of the general public will leave their computer on overnight to download a TV show? If this were built into FreeView boxes then it would be a lot more popular and could be done in a low power mode avoiding the 100W or more an hour of electricity that a computer will use.

Comments

Posted by Pigmaster over 8 years ago
I don't understand.

Are they saying that they intend to offer a download via the streaming player at a scheduled time or build a scheduler into the crap kontiki rubbish
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 8 years ago
Believe it is via the iPlayer software based on Kontiki
Posted by Going_Digital over 8 years ago
BBC will probably not drop the Kontiki for two reasons..

It cost them a lot of money and probably signed a contract for x number of years.

They would have to admit that they got it wrong and wasted licence payers money on an expensive and unpopular software system.
Posted by herdwick over 8 years ago
The iMP player which preceded the iPlayer had pre-booking of series etc as standard. You could also download before shows were aired but had to wait to watch them.

PS "100W or more an hour of electricity that a computer will use." is not correct - it's either 100W or 100 Wh per hour or 0.1 kWh per hour.
Posted by JimGardener over 8 years ago
I don't know why the iplayer download manager always gets a hammering on this site? It isn't perfect (but better than the 4OD one) but my connection isn't fast or reliable enough for the streaming content and I suspect I'm not alone. Also it's a handy way to take content away on holiday or working away from home.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 8 years ago
3 simple steps already.......

1 get free app called orbit
2 goto iplayer site find the tv - stream version you want to watch
3 start the stream and use orbits get/grab feature
4 close down your internet browser and configure orbits schedular with a time to start the download

Job done no new kontiki rubbish needed :D
Posted by CARPETBURN over 8 years ago
^^^ oh and i cant count yes i know thats 4 steps opppps lol
Posted by robbo1 over 8 years ago
Correct me if I am wrong, but I thought the downloaded version of the show (using the Kontiki system) was a higher quality than the streamed version. As I watch it using my TV rather than from a computer monitor, I much prefer to download the show and watch it later without the extra mpeg compression.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 8 years ago
If you are worried about the picture quality of programming and it bothers you too much you wont or wouldnt use services like this at all anyway.... Iplayer be it if you watch the stream or the downloaded version looks completely rubbish on a big screen TV (anything over 32inch and you can clearly see blockiness). The download versions only use around a third more bitrate and on a 30 min TV program thats nothing. In fact the sound on either version is only stereo and at a very low rate so that sounds naff through a decent surround system also.
Posted by scragglymonk over 8 years ago
if going to be forced to leave PC online to download a movie in DRM restricted format, might as well download the torrent file with no DRM

usually stream as wmp has a snafu along with msn IM, so suspect related
Posted by CARPETBURN over 8 years ago
DRM from iplayer, 4od and many other services such as that which use DRM on WMV and MP4 container formats can be stripped using freeware software in literally less than 10 seconds flat, you dont even have to risk using torrents and being told you are a bad boy/girl for doing so. When the likes of the BPI realise that they will have another thing to whine like a big girls blouse about.
Posted by gordonalder over 8 years ago
Surely, all this discussion about the merits of Kontiki is irrelevant. If the programme hasn't yet been shown, use a VCR, DVD recorder oa PVR - no broadband speed or usage issues; no problem with picture quality. BBC iPlayer really only has a use for programmes which you forgot to watch or record.
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