Back in August we told you how the BBC would bring the iPlayer to other platforms ‘in the autumn’. We can now welcome the iPlayer to the world of the Mac and any other flash-capable computer for that matter. A stop-gap solution it may be, but in all it’s flash glory you can now watch TV shows from up to 7 days ago; including some favourites such as Top Gear, The Mighty Boosh and the Beebs big soap, EastEnders.
It is UK only for licensing reasons. However, aside from that, it is well implemented allowing you to search by day, specific categories, or browse through an A-Z. Conveniently, when you move your mouse over an episode, it tells you how long you have left to watch it. The actual videos themselves are of average quality and struggle to scale up even to my MacBook’s screen, however they are easily watchable and great if you’ve missed something. Another nice feature is Guidance Lock which is hidden away in the upper right hand corner. it allows you to set a password to keep your little ones away from post-watershed content.
Although this is only a flash implementation, it is very well done and is a good, short term solution, however I would still like to see the BBC bring out a full Mac-Compatible desktop player in the very near future. If you are in the UK, you can check it out here; however if you are outside the UK, yhe BBC is due to launch a subscription based international player during 2008 – this however, may be Windows only.