Services & Software

iPlayer Android app to use new BBC Media Player tech

The BBC is updating its Android iPlayer app, promising "Android is an important platform for us".

The BBC is changing the way Android phones and tablets stream its online video, introducing new playback tech that will go live with an update next week.

The new technology is called BBC Media Player, and is a reaction to Adobe's decision to ditch Flash support for Android Jelly Bean -- the latest version of Google's mobile operating system.

iPlayer used Flash to stream video, and it still is, but now it's doing so using Adobe Air, Auntie explains on her blog. The Beeb says it was constrained in its choice of playback options by a need to keep both current and existing Android devices compatible, and meet the security requirements rights holders demand.

The new player tech is already being used with the mobile view of the iPlayer website, the BBC says. The Media Player app is available to download now if you want to take a look -- it takes you to applications and websites that work with the new player. Meanwhile, the updated version of iPlayer that will use the new technology is coming next week.

No downloads yet

The BBC is at pains to inform Android phone owners that they're valued customers, having recently come under fire for unveiling downloads for offline viewing for iOS gadgets, but promising only that the feature would appear on Android "soon".

Sadly there's still no word of that much-anticipated feature, but fingers crossed it arrives before too long.

Do you use iPlayer on Android? Are there any features it's missing that you'd love to see? Tell me in the comments or on our platform-agnostic Facebook wall.

Image credit: BBC