Microsoft updates Xbox; launches BBC iPlayer (finally)

Microsoft updates Xbox; launches BBC iPlayer (finally)

Summary: Doctor Who fans, get excited. The BBC announced this morning that the on-demand iPlayer app is finally heading to the Xbox. Microsoft says that updates are being rolled out today.

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TOPICS: Microsoft
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Xbox users have finally had the doors of BBC iPlayer opened to them, as the world's largest broadcaster's collection of on-demand television and radio --- and sometimes films, if they feel generous --- comes to the gaming console

After months of snarky Nintendo Wii and PlayStation 3 fans laughing in the faces of Xbox users, who had been given the iPlayer application update months earlier, Microsoft opened the doors to its millions of users to hundreds of weekly television and radio programmes today.

All you have to do is pop on the Xbox, wait for the update to appear, make yourself a mug of tea, and it's done by the time you get back.

Lucky Kinect owners, the motion activated controller for the Xbox, can also use their hands to gormlessly wave at their television sets to explore the vast array of drama, comedy, and factual programming. Just be sure to shut the curtains to avoid the neighbours peering in and staring at you.

Xbox users can already enjoy a series of on-demand television applications, from Channel 4, Channel 5, Netflix, and LoveFilm. But it's not a true experience until the BBC made its move today, as any television owner in the UK can flick the switch on the magical moving box and receive BBC programming from the start.

According to the Beeb, iPlayer is on over 450 platforms and devices, including the Nintendo Wii, the PlayStation 3, obviously now the Xbox 360, but also iPads, iPhones, and cable services.

The iPlayer is also the most popular on-demand service in the UK, beating Netflix and others hands down. It probably helps with the fact that it's not only free, but has the most up-to-date content. The BBC had over 433 million requests on TV devices in 2011 alone.

The BBC predicts that by 2015, at the rate that the market is moving at, over 50 percent of requests will be via TV devices, which include cable, satellite, gaming consoles and set-top box services that offer on-demand services, also known as "smart-TVs".

Internet TV (also known as "IP-TV") may be a while off, with the hope that one day the tubes of the Web will push all kinds of on-demand content directly to your telly box without the need for extra gadgets, set-top boxes or special television sets. In the meantime, games consoles on the most part are connected to our living room televisions, making them an ideal route to take for pushing on-demand television.

Image source: BBC.

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Topic: Microsoft

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6 comments
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  • just wait for apple to find out about iPlayer

    and you will see ihype trademark lawsuit starting.
    The Linux Geek
  • Good to see the BBC keeping with it's traditions

    They have always been on the forefront of new communications technology. Now maybe I can watch Top of the Pops on my Box... Now the real question is if MS is going to try and convince me to get a gold membership to get BBC.
    happyharry_z
  • Microsoft updates Xbox

    Really too bad we cannot get the BBC content here in the U.S. We are continually stuck with the mind numbing nonsense of American Broadcast and Cable T.V.
    I really, really sure miss the quality drama and comedy of British Entertainment that I used to watch all the time while living in Holland. (Yes we got it there also).
    It's so sad that Americans in general don't have that kind of entertainment. But then again they might discover that there is intelligence on this planet, different, better and much higher than in the U.S. Can't have that now can we? They might learn to think on their own.
    jkelley76
    • Solution: Back to Europe for You

      Problem solved. Freedom is lovely.
      zdnetreader123
  • Fire M$ Kinect Marketing team -

    I have been using Ms products but lately MS marketing team has gotten greedier and I am kind of put off by where there are talking M$

    Kinect is a wonderful product and I love it . However, Ms marketing had to c**ap on that and try milking it without realizing that they have the potential of making this into a device that could potentially be in every living room and should let it "free"
    Instead, they make people pay 50$/yr "XBOX GOLD MEMBERSHIP" to watch netflix and hulu etc even though i am already paying netflix subscription

    Even to watch Youtube , i need Gold ??!! for crying out aloud !!
    In the age where connected Blueray players with apps etc are available for 65$, WHY SHOULD I PAY MICROSOFT for netflix when I am already paying netflix
    arebangdu
  • Xbox live gold

    You are not paying ms for netflix, you are paying ms for the whole gold packadge. The packadge includes different forms of entertainment beyond TV/Movies.. Have you for example compared online gaming on the Xbox and the Ps3 ? One is free, the other (sometimes) requires the gold membership... well let me tell you, as owner of both systems.. I prefer to pay once a year for the quality experience.
    DJK2