Prime Minister Spells Out BBC iPlayer Issues To Petitioners

10 Downing Street has responded to the 16,071 people who signed an online petition calling on the BBC to make its iPlayer TV catch-up software platform. Citizens had used the government’s e-petition website to complain that the iPlayer beta, which is powered by Kontiki P2P software and uses Windows DRM, currently only works on Windows Xp. In its response, prime minister Gordon Brown’s office reminded the petitioners: “The BBC Trust made it a condition of approval for the BBC’s on-demand services that the iPlayer is available to users of a range of operating systems, and has given a commitment that it will ensure that the BBC meets this demand as soon as possible. They will measure the BBC’s progress on this every six months and publish the findings.”

There is nothing new in Brown’s statement, which just re-iterates the Trust’s previously stated position, but at least the state of play has now been made clear at the highest level to those most concerned. In an in-depth interview with paidContent:UK this week, Ashley Highfield, BBC director of future media and technology said a Mac iPlayer was under development and is ‘our next major priority”. Highfield: “The peer-to-peer solution has got unique issues with the Mac platform because we can only give our programming away for seven days for free and that