Updated iPlayer app brings show downloads to Android devices

The updated iPlayer app lets you download to Android devices for the first time.

The BBC has updated its iPlayer app for Android, letting you download shows to your Google-powered device. The feature has only been available on the iOS version of the app before.

The updated app is live now on Google Play. It should be made available in the Amazon App Store in the next few days, senior product manager David Berlin said in a blog post.

Downloads are free, and will last for 30 days. Once you've pressed Play, you'll get another seven days.

The iPhone iPlayer app has had this feature for a year now. The updated Android app will only work on devices running Android Jelly Bean or Ice Cream Sandwich. This is because only these builds offer the right level of protection for the programmes, according to Berlin.

It should mean that 70 per cent of Android owners with compatible devices should be able to download from today. The BBC will extend it to more devices in the future, and add new ones as they launch.

While you're downloading you can also go off and do something else on your phone, which you currently can't do with the iOS version. So it seems the BBC is compensating Android users for the delay in launching the feature.

Shows will download in High Quality by default, but you can switch to Standard Quality if you want to take up less space and get the show quicker.

From today, the feature is supported on these devices: Amazon Kindle Fire 8.9 , Nexus 7 (both the old and new models), HTC One , Nexus 4, Samsung Galaxy S2 , S3 and S4 , Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7-inch, Google Nexus 10, and Sony Xperia Z .

The BBC is working with Amazon to add the original Kindle Fire and the  7-inch Kindle Fire HD  to the list.

Have you tried the download feature? Is your device supported? How else could it be improved? Let me know in the comments, or on our Facebook page.

About the author

    Joe has been writing about consumer tech for nearly seven years now, but his liking for all things shiny goes back to the Gameboy he received aged eight (and that he still plays on at family gatherings, much to the annoyance of his parents). His pride and joy is an Infocus projector, whose 80-inch picture elevates movie nights to a whole new level.


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