Tag Archives: BBC

BBC iPlayer launches Wii channel

iPlayer Wii Channel
iPlayer Wii Channel
Well it finally happened. It was hinted at long ago when the Beeb first made the iPlayer available for the Wii via its internet browser, but now it seems that there will be a dedicated channel on the Wii.

I’m glad that it finally came along. After the recent Internet Channel update, the iPlayer hasn’t been working. Seeing as there is a supposed Flash upgrade in the update, it seemed daft that it would be disabled.

Hopefully the new channel will stream the video more smoothly. It’s been over a year in the making…

Read more at BBC iPlayer launches Wii channel.

How to download BBC iPlayer programmes

I’ve found the BBC iPlayer client very frustrating to use. Even though the client is cross-platform thanks to Adobe Air – it’s slow and sometimes doesn’t allow you to download a programme when you should be able to.

Also, it doesn’t work properly on 64-bit platforms such as Ubuntu (which is what I use), so the process becomes even more difficult.

So, after getting quite fed up with iPlayer still not quite delivering – I had a scoot around the internet and found a very useful program which will download those videos very nicely.

get_iplayer boasts that it can download BBC TV, radio and ITV onto your computer. Not only this, but it can also be scheduled to download your favourite programmes just like a PVR. So it’s like Sky+ or TiVo, but better. But bear in mind the disclaimer:

Of course, to respect the content providers’ wishes and fair-use legislation, you should keep the recorded content for no longer than 30 days (in the UK), not attempt to obtain it from outside of the UK and not redistribute it. get_iplayer is not intended for use in making illegal copies of copyrighted content. Please respect the rights of the content owners when recording. get_iplayer will attempt to remove its recorded content which is more than 30 days old.

Getting Started
First thing’s first, we need to install it. I’ll assume that you’re using Ubuntu Linux for this, but you can install this on Linux, Mac or Windows.

First of all, download the get_iplayer package from the download page. You’ll also need the flvstreamer package to download the high quality videos.

Once downloaded and installed, you’ll be all set to start downloading. The first thing to do is get an up to date list of programmes. Running

<code>get_iplayer</code>

On its own will refresh the BBC feed and list all the programmes curently available. There may be a lot so you might want to search by the title of the programme:

<code>get_iplayer "Top Gear"</code>

will list all of the BBC iPlayer programmes matching the phrase “Top Gear”

Now you decide that you want to download all of the “Top Gear” series, you can download them with:

<code>get_iplayer "Top Gear" --get</code>

This will download all the available episodes of Top Gear as a .mov file. Using additional parameters, you can also download in various formats such as HD .mp4 files.

Alternatively, if you’ve got the link to a program and you want to download it without any fuss – then you just need the URL or the ID of the programme to download it instantly:

<code>get_iplayer --get --pid http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b007vl20/Will_Smith_Presents_The_Tao_of_Bergerac_Episode_3/</code>

This will download the radio show The Tao of Bergerac onto  your computer without the need for searching for the programme through the get_iplayer command line tools.

There is loads more you can do, such as using get_iplayer as a PVR. The documentation covers the different commands well, and is definitely worth having a squint through. Just remember to watch how much you’re downloading if you have capped bandwidth from you internet provider.

If you feel like something a bit more graphical, the is also a get_iplayer PVR Manager available to try.

Happy downloading!

BBC iPlayer on Wii!

Well, I’m very excited.

The Beeb have made it possible for Wii users to watch streaming video with the iPlayer.

Right now, UK Wii owners who use the Internet Channel (£3.50 to you squire) can visit the iPlayer website and watch TV right now.

There are also hints that an iPlayer channel for the Wii will be available some time in the future (hopefully for free, but likely to be bundled with the Internet Channel).

This is great for that media convergent home. Ironically, the Wii is the console least likely to be touted as a multimedia center – and yet it’s the first of the current generation of consoles to be able to play the content.

Word is that the Playstation 3 will not be far behind – but Microsoft’s XBox360 will be unlikely to take part unless a deal can be made between MS and BBC.

I think that if the iPlayer Channel does manifest itself – I’ll be spending much more time on the Wii. Potentially, this could knock out a whole load of the Sky+ box’s usefulness along with it.

My Queue

So the BBC had their annual Test the Nation IQ test tonight.

It was a bit of a grind as one of the sections asked questions about a video that they played at the start which I didn’t watch. Luckily, my knowledge of Monty Python sketches and Smith and Jones comedies allowed me to scrape a few points back that I wouldn’t have had otherwise.

Still, I dropped a few points from last year and ended up with a 129. I swear it was harder than last year, and a few questions I managed by guessing them. My reasoning for others was so far off it was untrue.

Still, it’s a nice way to spend a Saturday night.