Posts Tagged ‘N96’

Hands-on: BBC iPlayer for Nokia N96

It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of the BBC’s TV catch-up service iPlayer (UK-only), which I regularly access on my laptop, cable television set-top box, and of course my trusty iPod touch. The problem with the latter version, however, is that it offers streaming only not downloads, which doesn’t sit well for a mobile device as it prohibits off-line access such as when traveling on a plane or train or anywhere without WiFi access. It isn’t the BBC’s fault but the fact that Apple doesn’t license the iPod and iPhone’s proprietary DRM solution – so-called FairPlay – to third-parties. DRM is a necessary evil, says the public broadcaster, in order to meet its obligations to copyright holders who require that programs only be made available for up to seven days after broadcast.

In contrast, the newly released version of iPlayer for Nokia’s latest flagship handset, the N96, doesn’t suffer the same problem, offering both streaming and downloads. Earlier this afternoon I got some hands-on time with iPlayer on the Nokia N96.

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BBC iPlayer shows a little too much love to Nokia's N96?

Erik Huggers is the BBC’s Director of Future Media and Technology. Although a more apt title for himself, along with predecessor, Ashley Highfield, would be Director of Future License Fee Justification. That’s because the BBC, which is funded by British tax payers, is doing more than most broadcasters to stay relevant as we move towards a future where viewers want to watch ‘television’ on their own terms: from anywhere, on-demand and on the device of their choice.

Enter the BBC’s catch-up service, iPlayer, which streams the public broadcaster’s content to Windows PCs and Macs, Nintendo’s Wii, Apple’s iPhone and iPod touch, along with Virgin Media’s cable TV service. A download version is also available for Windows-only.

And just today, the BBC and Nokia announced that a streaming and download version of iPlayer will soon be available for the mobile phone maker’s yet-to-be-released N96 handset.

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