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BBC's iPlayer apps hit 20 million downloads, still aren't coming to the US

Richard Lawler, @Rjcc
October 24, 2013
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The BBC reports its iPlayer apps for Android and iOS have crossed a new milestone, with 20 million downloads total since launching back in 2011. Of course, that number might be a little inflated by certain individuals downloading it multiple times (our UK staff alone probably accounts for several dozen) but it's still impressive. Other numbers shared included a peek at the most downloaded episodes ever (since the feature launched in September 2012), and Top Gear's season 20 episode premiere took the top spot with about 92,000. 70 million TV requests came in from mobile devices in September, with mobiles making up 41 percent of all iPlayer requests.

As popular as the apps are at home, the BBC recently announced changes to its plans for their international availability. CEO Tim Davie's vision for the future of BBC Worldwide includes a transformation of BBC.com that focuses on video, and proposes folding the app into the website as a part of his three year plan. So, after reaching 16 countries including Canada and Australia (but not the US) iPlayer Global won't see any further expansion, with plans instead for an "international version of a BBC store." After a long lull in development we suppose it's good to hear anything on that front, and knowing that the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary special episode will be simulcast on BBC America November 23rd (Sherlock fans should know season three's first episode is coming to PBS on January 19th) helps ease the pain of missing out just a bit.



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