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BBC iPlayer downloads now on ALL Android phones and tablets

BBC iPlayer for Android

Beeb goes from supporting just 34 devices to supporting thousands of Android phones and tablets

You can now download your favourite BBC TV shows to your Android phone or tablet after the BBC announced it was making the feature available on almost every device.

The broadcaster explained that rather than “whitelisting” Android phones and tablets it was now making BBC iPlayer downloads available on all Android devices running 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich or higher.

The BBC will still have a “blacklist” of Android devices that don’t support iPlayer downloads, but said that this list would be very small.

Despite announcing BBC iPlayer downloads for Android in September 2013, the BBC only supported 34 devices by the middle of April.

Scores of people had complained that their Android devices didn’t support the feature, which many assumed was available to all via the BBC iPlayer app. The BBC said its developers had been working on bringing iPlayer downloads to the most popular phones and tablets such as Amazon Kindle Fire, Samsung Galaxy S4, Sony Xperia Z1 and Tesco Hudl. Despite this, many popular Android devices, including the Nexus 5, weren’t supported.

The BBC explained that playback quality issues, application crashes, handsets freezing and piracy concerns had all caused problems, but it was now satisfied that it had ironed out most the bugs. It explained that most devices now had the quality of experience that it wanted, allowing it to enable nearly all Android phones and tablets.

“Should the BBC be made aware of a major issue with the downloads feature that is affecting a particular device, we now have the option to disable this feature for that specific model/OS combination, while we assess whether it can be fixed,” explained David Braben, Senior Product Manager for BBC iPlayer Mobile Apps.

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