Enjoy Streaming TV and Radio with iPlayer for Android

April 5, 2011, By Christian Cawley

There are many online streaming services that you can access on your Android; you might be happy watching YouTube, for instance, or TV Shows Stream, an app that lets you access a wide variety of top shows from various services.

One of the most popular online TV streaming and catchup services is BBC iPlayer, a tool that is used widely in the UK and surrounding countries (with the help of some IP fraud) to let people view shows that they missed. Fans of shows such as EastEnders, Top Gear or Doctor Who might rewatch episodes, for instance, and the service also allows users to listen to live radio from the BBC’s many stations across the UK.

Enjoy streaming TV and radio with iPlayer for ANdroid

While currently a UK only service, an international version of BBC iPlayer is expected to be launched over the next few months. Android users in the UK have just been given an official iPlayer app that allows them to enjoy the service for free, providing their phone or tablet meets certain hardware requirements, such as Android 2.2 and a device that runs Flash.

Finding and Using iPlayer for Android

The first thing that you need to do to enjoy the iPlayer on your Android device is to ensure your hardware meets the minimum standards for use.

Second, head to the Android Market and search for “iplayer”. You’ll find the result comes in at number one, so follow the usual procedure for installing an app from the Market.

Once installed, you will be free to use the iPlayer across your local Wi-Fi connection. Visit the apps screen to start iPlayer, where you will see a menu that splits content between TV, radio and favourites; the same set of buttons offers a search tool for finding particular shows.

Next to the search tool is the menu tool that allows you to find specific TV or radio stations, browse categories of broadcast and find any live broadcasts.

The iPlayer features audio and video content from the past 7 days (with a few exceptions) and these can be enjoyed simply by tapping the title in question and pressing Play. Note that you can enjoy shows in full screen mode, particularly useful for tablets.

Tapping the Android menu button offers access to the Settings button, where you can activate the Parental Guidance lock. This enables you to set a PIN to prevent unauthorised access, and keep young eyes and ears from watching unsuitable TV news and dramas.

Also in the Settings screen you can alter the video quality, switching between Low, Medium and High depending on your wireless Internet speed.

Sadly the BBC iPlayer does have one drawback – at present it isn’t possible for Android users to enjoy the content over a 3G connection, even radio. This has proved a bone of contention as UK-based Apple iPhone and iPad users can enjoy BBC iPlayer across the usual 3G mobile Internet.

Worse still, a previous, unofficial iPlayer app was forcibly decommissioned by the BBC before the launch of their app; myPlayer offered 3G radio and catchup TV…

© 2008-2012 DeviceMag.com - All rights reserved | Privacy Policy