24
Aug
07

iPlayer – it doesn’t get better

I’ve been trying to use iPlayer for a while now, and instead of getting better it’s actually getting worse. Last week was a horrible mess where content appeared, then disappeared, the reappeared and still didn’t work. For example; Doctor Who on the 16th was on the lists but you couldn’t download it, and that was true an entire week later when it was removed after it’s 7 day slot. In 7 days they couldn’t get a single file and put it in the right place! I wouldn’t mind but the amount of material their currently releasing is very small, if given the source data I could output the conversions needed for each day alone with a couple of computers. I presume the BBC has more that two computers…
But there are other issues. I noticed today that they’d listened to their critics a little, and upped the bit rate/resolution of the shows! Hooray! Oh, hang on…the person who converted them didn’t realise they weren’t normal aspect ratio, but widescreen, and so they won’t play correctly in full screen! Doh! And they’ve also started to put links in for shows that are being released tomorrow, but when you click on them nothing happens, so it’s entirely pointless as you can’t order a show to download in advance.
I tried to mention some of these issues on the BBC forum, but it won’t accept my password, and tells me that my birth date is incorrect when I try to change it, something I’m unlikely to get wrong.
I’m sure the BBC will eventually stop making amateurish mistakes with iPlayer, but I’m wondering if anyone will be using it by then.

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