4oD gets downloads for offline TV, on iOS and Android

The app lets you download catch-up telly from Channel 4 from the last 30 days.

Luke Westaway Senior editor
Luke Westaway is a senior editor at CNET and writer/ presenter of Adventures in Tech, a thrilling gadget show produced in our London office. Luke's focus is on keeping you in the loop with a mix of video, features, expert opinion and analysis.
Luke Westaway
2 min read

Channel 4 is ramping up its catch-up service, letting owners of Apple and Android gadgets hoard 4oD programmes for offline viewing.

Channel 4 promised that downloads would be coming way back in November, with iOS owners pegged to get the new feature in early 2013. July isn't quite as early as we expected, but better late than never, eh?

Although 4oD hosts a slew of older, beloved TV shows that have aired in the past, the mobile download feature will only let you save catch-up telly from the last 30 days.

Only Channel 4 programming will be available to start with, but the broadcaster says it's hoping to add goodies from US studios "as and when possible". You can download as many shows as you want, though the relatively low capacity of most mobile devices means you'll want to keep an eye on your available storage.

There are a few hoops to jump through before you can start downloading shows. You'll have to register with Channel 4, and even if you're already registered you'll have to hand over your postcode in addition to the info you already gave.

Limited 'Droid support

Like Sky, Channel 4 has only built its app to work with a handful of Android devices. These are -- deep breath -- the Google Nexus S, Nexus 4, Nexus 7, Nexus 10, Samsung Galaxy Nexus, Samsung Galaxy Note, Galaxy S3, Galaxy S4 and the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 10.1.

Those are some of the most popular Android phones and tablets out there, but it's dismaying not to see a single HTC phone supported. You will be able to download the app onto other Android devices, but Channel 4 doesn't guarantee it'll work well.

iPlayer trumped

The BBC iPlayer app already lets you download programmes -- but only if you own an Apple device. Channel 4 deserves a high-five for releasing a download option for Android ahead of its TV license-funded rival.

The Beeb meanwhile has been told by the BBC Trust that it must sort out downloads for Android devices this year.

Will you download Channel 4 programmes, or are you happy to stream your catch-up telly? Let me know in the comments, or on our Facebook wall.