BBC iPlayer 2.0 launches 26 June

The BBC will introduce an all-new version of its iPlayer catch-up TV service online tomorrow, calling this iPlayer beta 2.0. The new service will offer all the existing features of the increasingly popular catch-up television service, but adds a variety of useful widgets, including RSS feeds, and a new More Like This widget at the bottom of the page.
iPlayer also offers much-improved video performance – 640 pixels wide, up from the previous 512 pixels – a 25% size increase. BBC has also combined radio and television within the service, and also introduced a range of personalisation features for users. For example, iPlayer will remember which shows a user has recently played, so when new episodes of those programmes become available they’ll automatically show up in the Last Played widget.
“One of our most common feature requests is for an indication of whether a given programme is scheduled to appear in iPlayer or not,” the BBC reveals. iPlayer 2.0 will offer a full schedule view showing all programmes that were on TV and radio, with an indication of which are available for viewing in iPlayer now, which are coming soon, and which (usually for content licensing reasons) are not scheduled for iPlayer.
For users hoping to use iPlayer to catch up on last night’s TV the BBC has introduced a dedicated widget for that purpose on its homepage.
Anthony Rose, Head of Digital Media Technology, BBC Future Media and Technology, added: “iPlayer gets five million page views per day now, which the BBC thinks will double when it adds radio, and then double again over the next few months.”
There have been over 100 million requests to view programmes since BBC iPlayer launched. In May alone, there were 21.8 million requests to view, some 700,000 per day on average.
The new-look service, which launches in beta tomorrow, will ‘dual run’ alongside the existing iPlayer for the next few weeks.
The new-look BBC iPlayer will be available on other platforms for TV catch-up, including the Apple iPhone & iPod touch, and the Nintendo Wii. Audio on demand and live streaming will become available in due course.

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