APP OF THE DAY: BBC iPlayer (Android)

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iPlayer-for-Android-top.jpegIt’s not just Apple’s iPad getting some loving from the Beeb this week, as an official Android app for the BBC iPlayer has hit Google phones and tablets today too.

The free app allows 400 hours worth of TV and radio shows to be streamed to any Android device rocking version 2.2 and above of the OS, as well as having Flash 10.1 installed. Streaming has to be done over Wi-Fi, which limits mobile viewing, but will be a relief when your data bill comes in at the end of the month.

It’s a beautiful interface, keeping the pink and black stylings of the other versions of the iPlayer, with tiled, scrollable reccomendations, favourites, programme information and a fully searchable catalogue of shows.

We did however note that there was some real stutter to playback at any video quality level above the lowest setting, even when using a top-spec handset like a Desire HD with no background apps running. This may be an app best preserved for the incoming wave of dual-core smartphones. Also the high-res 800kbps option doesn’t quite have the crispness to flesh out the experience for larger devices like the Samsung Galaxy Tab, but who are we to complain when you’ve got such quality TV in the palm of your hand?

Grab the app for free by clicking here, and scroll down for some shots of the app in action.

(Android apps are reviewed using a HTC Desire HD – grab one here from Three)

Gerald Lynch