BBC iPlayer gets portable with Windows Media

Is sideloading the new downloading?

Is sideloading the new downloading?

BBC iPlayer will now work on portable devices that support Microsoft Windows Media-protected content, opening the service up to more portable devices than ever.

Users will be able to transfer - or sideload - BBC TV programmes downloaded from iPlayer to their PC onto their media device.

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The news was announced in a posting on the BBC Internet Blog, by head of the BBC's online media group, Anthony Rose.

The devices that will now support iPlayer include much of the Sony Walkman range, the Archos 605 WIFI and Internet Media Tablet, Philips GoGear 52xx series and the Samsung YP-P2 and YP-Q1.

The Philips and Sony devices do not have internet connectivity, meaning iPlayer programmes can only be acquired by connecting them to a PC containing the content.

So far the Beeb has only fully tested iPlayer with the Archos, Philips, Samsung and Sony gadgets but the broadcaster said iPlayer should also work on other devices that support Windows Media DRM content.

As not all devices indicate clearly if they support Windows DRM, the BBC has launched a web page called "Where To Get BBC iPlayer" which lists the model numbers of devices that are compatible with iPlayer.

Rose said there will be a similar release for Mac and Linux users "very soon".

iPlayer has been available for the Apple iPhone and iPod for some time and recently became compatible with the Sony PSP and Nokia N96 smart phone.