UK: BBC makes TV programmes v…

UK: BBC makes TV programmes viewable on Open Source, no downloads

18/10/2007

The British public-service broadcaster BBC will be using Flash software by Adobe to allow users of Mac OS X and Linux based computers to view but not download TV programmes, the broadcaster announced earlier this week.

When the BBC launched its iPlayer software in July, it was criticised by the Open Source Consortium, an Open Source advocacy group, for making this application available only for computer users who run the Microsoft proprietary operating systems. The advocacy group compared this to making public TV available only for certain make of television.

This week the BBC announced it would also make its programs available using Adobe's Flash software. This means that at the end of the year, most if not all computer users can use a web browser to watch TV programmes, explained Ashley Highfield, the BBC's director of Future Media and Technology.

Whereas the iPlayer allows PC users to download programmes, the Flash based application will not. In an interview with the BBC, Highfield said the broadcaster will also not be making a seperate version of iPlayer for Mac and Linux users. "We need to get the streaming service up and look at the ratio of consumption between the services and then we need to look long and hard at whether we build a download service for Mac and Linux. It comes down to cost per person and reach at the end of the day."

 
© European Communities 2007
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The views expressed are not an official position of the European Commission.

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