BBC Worldwide isn't quite ready to debut its "global" iPlayer app for the iPad here in the US yet, but now it's a bit closer after updating to v1.2.5 and becoming available in Canada. The app debuted back in July bringing iPlayer streaming access to tablets across Western Europe, before taking its programmes to Australia back in September. It will cost Canadians $8.99 per month for access BBC shows like Fawlty Towers, Whitechapel, and Hustle, but viewers in all 16 territories with access can snag one free episode per day through December 25th. The Hollywood Reporter indicates this is all part of a year long pilot phase with a next step of opening it up to US audiences, so those with patience don't need to put on their snowshoes and move to the Great White North just yet.
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BBC Worldwide offers festive promotion on Global iPlayer App with a free piece of content every day from 1st – 25th December
Date: 01.12.2011Last updated: 01.12.2011 at 09.29
Category: BBC Worldwide
London, 1st December 2011 BBC Worldwide, the BBC's commercial arm, has announced that the global BBC iPlayer App will be offering users a free piece of festive content every day from 1st – 25th December, exclusively from the App store, as part of a special Christmas promotion.
From today the service will also be available in Canada – the sixteenth territory to be added to the pilot launch.
The global BBC iPlayer App is a unique Video on Demand pilot subscription service available on iPad that offers viewers in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, The Republic of Ireland, The Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland the opportunity to delve into an extensive archive of award-winning classic and contemporary British TV programming both at home and on the move.
Jana Bennett, BBC Worldwide President of Worldwide Networks and Global iPlayer said: "We're proud to be building on the successful launch of this App by introducing it to Canada. It will open up the opportunity for a whole new audience to enjoy the best moments from seventy years of brilliant BBC programmes, wherever and whenever they want."
From today those who download the App for free from the App store can access an episode every day until Christmas Day for no charge and without having to sign up to the monthly or annual subscription. The free content includes a festive themed variety of the best of BBC and the best of British creativity including Christmas specials from iconic shows Only Fools and Horses and Absolutely Fabulous, plus 12 Days of Gavin and Stacey, Jamie Oliver's The Naked Chef – The Christmas Party, and Blackadder's Christmas Carol dependent on availability per country.
Matthew Littleford, General Manager for Global iPlayer said: "For those not familiar with the great BBC content available on the App, the festive offering is the perfect way to trial the service and get a good flavour of the quality and breadth of programmes it provides."
Those who wish to subscribe to the service can do so for a cost of €6.99 a month (or €64.99 for an annual subscription) in Europe, $8.99 a month (or $84.99 for an annual subscription) in Canada and $9.49 a month (or $89.99 for an annual subscription) in Australia. Viewers will be able to sample carefully selected content for free before subscribing.
A subscription to the global BBC iPlayer offers access to iconic British comedies such as Fawlty Towers, Absolutely Fabulous and Only Fools & Horses as well as contemporary sitcoms and sketch shows including Gavin and Stacey and Little Britain. Viewers can also enjoy thrilling new drama series Whitechapel and Spooks, classic period dramas such as the much loved and quintessentially British Pride and Prejudice starring Colin Firth, recent episodes of the UK's famous soap EastEnders, global motoring phenomenon Top Gear, the Doctor Who archive, stunning natural history programmes Blue Planet and Horizon, and the adorable children's show Charlie & Lola.
On 1st December the app will debut EastEnders: E20 in some territories– a brand new online spin-off version of EastEnders comprised of 3 16-minute episodes, perfect for watching on the smaller screen or on the go.
In addition to featuring the best in classic and current British shows, the app offers specially curated collections of programmes that will give audiences an opportunity to explore thousands of hours of fascinating content. Subscribers can embark on a journey of discovery of great British talent and writers, as well as learning the story of Doctor Who's famous Daleks in Daleks Forever which is just one of the curated collections available in the extensive archive.
Subscribers will also have the opportunity to access the BBC's music archive including captivating live shows by Oasis and Robbie Williams at the BBC Electric Proms from 2007 – 2009, Blur – Live at Hyde Park and Dire Straits – Arena.
A weekly-updated BBC News Programme collection is also available to subscribers offering highly respected topical news shows broadcast on the BBC News channels. Key titles include the BBC's flagship news and current affairs programme, Newsnight, noted for its in-depth analysis and robust cross-examination of senior politicians (available within a week of the UK broadcast), as well as HARDTalk, Click (a popular technology magazine show covering news and developments in consumer technology), Fast Track and Talking Movies (a guide to the best in film, from the most recent Hollywood blockbusters to ground-breaking world cinema).
Designed to be intuitive and easy-to-use, a key feature of the app allows subscribers both to stream and download shows for offline viewing for when Wi-Fi or 3G connectivity is unavailable. Users will also be able to use the 'Airplay' feature to wirelessly stream videos and music to Apple TV (2nd generation) and also stream music to AirPlay speakers or receivers, including AirPort Express.
The global BBC iPlayer App is now available to download for free from the App Store on iPhone at www.bbc.com/iplayer/tv.