BBC’s video streaming app is about to get an update to allow users to download television shows for offline viewing. The BBC iPlayer will soon offer downloadable content of current episodes of your favorite shows for the first time.
Too bad the U.S. can’t get in on this action. It would be great to keep updated on Doctor Who on the iPad.
According to the Guardian UK, starting today paying subscribers to the BBC iPlayer will be able to download programs from the app onto their iPad or iPhone and watch them offline for no additional fee. Previously, subscribers were only allowed to watch movies and TV shows on mobile devices by streaming them through the app using a wireless network or cellular service.
BBC general manager of on-demand programs Daniel Danker said, “This fundamentally changes one of the most annoying restrictions about viewing programs. It means audiences are liberated from the constraints [of online-only viewing] and it fundamentally changes what it means to go on holiday.”
Danker also pointed out that, with mobile downloads, viewers can fill up their devices with their favorite shows and head out on the road without worrying about needing an Internet connection.
Currently, users must have a wi-fi connection to download the BBC programs, but the iPlayer will soon offer downloads via cellular networks, too.
The BBC iPlayer, and all other television and movie streaming services from the UK are not available in the US. Rights agreements restrict the availability of content. The BBC Worldwide has made some content available in other countries, but the US is still not allowed to access content official, other than through BBC America.
With this news, it makes you wonder whether Netflix and Hulu Plus will ever offer such services. It would be nice to grab a movie off of one of the subscription-based video services to watch while on the road with the kids and not have to worry about whether or not there will be an Internet connection nearby.