BBC iPlayer

BBC iPlayer

10,000,000 - 50,000,000 downloads

  • Search through the entire BBC catalog of the last 30 days
  • Cast content to your TV via Chromecast
  • Live stream or download to watch later
  • TV and radio content
  • Only available within the Uk
  • Downloading only available on Android OS Ice Cream Sandwich and above
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Expert's Review

"BBC easy as 1-2-3"

Reviewed by / Nov 06, 2014

Catch up on your favorite BBC TV and radio shows and live stream through the app

Missed last Friday's episode of Eastenders ? Maybe you want to relive the excitement of the Great British Bake Off final all over again. The brilliant BBC iPlayer app lets you live stream programs and catch up on your favorite shows from the last 30 days.

Whether you're on a Wi-Fi or cellular network, you can swipe through the featured and favorite programs (TV and radio, local and national), browse by channel or category and filter by day and time. You can either stream past programs directly, or download them to watch later (downloading takes place in the background of your other apps). You can also cast all content to your TV using Chromecast.

Sadly, as a Brit abroad, I can only indulge in BBC iPlayer when I am back home- the app is only available from within the UK. And furthermore, you should be aware that when live streaming TV broadcasts, you therefore confirming that you have bought and paid for your TV license.

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Developer's original description available here
Features include:

- Watch live TV
- Watch over Wi-Fi and cellular networks
- Download TV programmes to watch later (on devices running Android OS Ice Cream Sandwich and above)

We’re aware of some problems with Downloads in the BBC iPlayer app when you upgrade to the new Android Lollipop operating system.

If you upgrade to Lollipop, you may find you can’t access your downloads in the BBC iPlayer app. We’re working to fix the problem, and when we’ve done so you should be able to access your available downloads again. So please be sure to accept any app updates.

In the meantime, we recommend you watch anything you’ve downloaded by streaming it, just to be on the safe side.

We’re sorry for any inconvenience this causes.

We know some Android KitKat users are having issues playing downloaded programmes. We're treating these issues very seriously and have raised them with Google who, so far, haven't been able to provide a fix. We're continuing to work with Google on this and hope the issues will be fixed soon.

For more info on these issues visit

- Scroll through and find Featured and Most Popular programmes
- Browse through Category and Channel pages
- Cast content to your TV using Chromecast

We have developed the BBC Media Player app to improve video streaming playback on Android devices. You will need to install this separately from the Google Play marketplace.

To make installation of the BBC Media Player as easy as possible, BBC iPlayer will prompt you to install it when you first play a streamed programme.

The BBC iPlayer app uses standard Android app permissions that are defined by the Google Android platform. The permissions the BBC iPlayer Android app asks to use are:

Read phone status and identity – allows us to securely link downloads to your device, so they cannot be copied to another.

Modify or delete the contents of your USB storage – allows the app to save images, metadata and downloads.

Full network access- allows the app to access the internet.

View network connections - Allows the app to access details about network connectivity i.e. whether the device is on Wi-Fi or 3G/4G.

Prevent phone from sleeping – enables downloads to be performed in the background.

Test access to protected storage – allows the app to check if there is space on your device to download programmes.

Recently changed in this version

What’s new in Version 4.4?

- New Audio Described category makes BBC iPlayer more accessible than ever.
- Most Popular has expanded to show 40 programmes, giving a greater selection of well-loved shows.
- A ban on buffering! Programmes now automatically play at the best video quality for your connection.
- Various other minor bugs have been exterminated (humanely, of course).

As ever, send any feedback to @bbciplayer on Twitter or

Comments and ratings for BBC iPlayer
  • (56)

    by Julien Chilloux on 07/11/2014

    As previously mentionned, the app is slow and sluggish and downloads stutter after 15-30 minutes. This has been on going now for the best of a year with no sign of a fix.

  • (56)

    by Bernie Beyen on 07/11/2014

    Since the latest update, which hails a ban on buffering, streaming is severely affected by serious lags, with playback either stopping completely for seconds on end or the video freezing whilst the audio carries on, until after some time the video resumes and catches up. Result is that streaming is basically impossible. This never used to be such a big problem when buffering was still enabled. Wha

  • (56)

    by Martin Ellam on 07/11/2014

    Downloads won't work.

  • (56)

    by Simon Richards on 07/11/2014

    On Android 5 Lollipop the picture freezes and the sound is lousy or non-existent.

  • (56)

    by Toby Hales on 07/11/2014

    Overall I rate the service pretty good although the picture quality isn't the best and it gets especially blocky during transitions and animations. Please make some adjustments for five stars.

  • (56)

    by Mark Mccreadie on 06/11/2014

    Its pants

  • (56)

    by Reeshi Harania on 06/11/2014

    Programs stutter after 30 mins and is very slow on android. Works ok on iPhone so must be a compatiblity issue.. Needs sorting