back to article Beeb's online music stations get rewind button

The BBC has launched a raft of updates to its iPlayer on demand service, including the long-awaited ability to rewind music radio stations online. The new version is set to go live in beta on Thursday and will run alongside the current site for a few weeks. The most significant structural change is the full integration of the …


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  1. Mark Cathcart

    No effect on live radio broadcast overseas I hope

    I use Real Player on WM6 on my phone to listen to BBC Radio London live over the net, it even works great in my car plugged in, in fact its mostly as good as being in London, except no traffic jams, congestion charge etc.

    Hopefully these changes won't stop that from working...

  2. J-Wick

    Hope it's still usable in the US!

    Already disappointed I can't view Beeb video cos the IPlayer is for UK residents only. Hopefully I can still listen to the radio after this upgrade!

    Flames cos I'll probably get some for liking the BBC...

  3. David

    128 Kbps?

    If this is replacing the existing Listen Again it doesn't sound very dial-up friendly...

  4. Ed


    Where does it say they're using MP3 for their live radio? I can't see that in the press release or the blog post, and I've not seen it mentioned anywhere else...

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Virtual server for £12/month Install proxy, listen away.

  6. Kanhef


    With the rewind feature added, surely you meant 'iPlayer buffered up'

  7. JB

    Hands off!

    I agree with some of the other posters - hands off the web-based radio iPlayer. I paid my TV licence for years in the UK, now living in California, I listen to Radio 4 every day. I really don't know what I'd do without it.

  8. Ray Robertson
    Thumb Up

    Goodbye RealPlayer!!

    Great, I can finally uninstall RealPlayer! The buggy, bloated piece of rubbish.

    Thank you BBC.

  9. Ginger

    Worldwide subscription

    I wish they'd offer a worldwide subscription offer to stop people leeching off of my license fee... rights issues will mean this will never happen though :(

  10. Dave Jones

    Not your Auntie's BBC....

    Does this mean somebody at the Beeb is actually (gasp, choke) competent? Years of tradition (and some gongs) are at stake here. Only true ineptitude should prevail in the land of Reith. Bring back Prentice and McCabe!

  11. Neil Greatorex
    Paris Hilton

    @ By J-Wick

    "Flames cos I'll probably get some for liking the BBC"

    Not from anyone here, son :-)

    "I can't view Beeb video cos the IPlayer is for UK residents only"

    Have you tried using a UK web proxy?

    Paris, cos she could be my proxy :-)

  12. flashy blade

    will it work on wii?

    It's been an irritation of the radio player that it didn't work on the wii. It won't change my life if it does work, but I'd like to know.

  13. Guy


    I third or forth the statement that it'd better not stop me listening to the radio from overseas.

    If it does, maybe the long promised, little delivered project kangaroo will hop to our rescue.

  14. Chris Williams (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: MP3

    Hi Ed,

    Please re-read the article. It states that Listen Again will be MP3. You didn't see it mentioned anywhere else because nobody else bothered to ask.

    There's no word on what format live streams will be when they're integrated into iPlayer.

    - chris

  15. James Condron

    Mashed 08

    I knew that the beeb ran Mashed/ Hack Day for a reason, My friend and I ran a project doing the same thing at the weekend, as did a few other people...

    Would quite like the royalties

  16. Ed


    Chris, thanks. Re-read it. My addled brain took streaming to mean 'live streaming'. Making the on-demand streams MP3 basically makes every stream downloadable and potentially podcastable. Interesting, considering they've been unable to make podcasts of many programmes due to rights issues...

  17. jonathan keith
    Thumb Up

    Goodbye Real Player

    Thank fuck for that. It's been the biggest thorn in my side re: BBC online for years.

  18. Mark

    Still no PS3 support from BBC,

    despite offering it for months now...

    I wonder if they have some backhander with Nintendo... Surely exclusive deals that prevent UK licence payers accessing content is slightly dubious...

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Today's stock market breaking news

    Real networks has filed for bankruptcy, thousands flock to dance on the grave of the shittest piece of bloated crapware ever thrust upon the radio listening public.

    thank fuck... :)

  20. Anonymous Coward

    Re: Goodbye Real Player

    Thank fuck for that. It's been the biggest thorn in my side re: BBC online for years.

    Yay! I second that emotion!

  21. Daniel Bennett

    So Long Realplayer!

    So long and thanks for all the crap

    Now you are going to get the sack.


  22. Robert Grant Silver badge

    iPlayer > 4OD

    I've tried them both recently, and mine's the one without the registration and login every time I want to watch something. 4OD's login even times out while you watch, so you have to login /again/ to watch something straight after

  23. Gordon Jahn

    RealPlayer's not that bad...

    I'll get a kicking for this I'm sure, but the thing is that as far as I've experienced, only RealPlayer on Windows is crap. RealPlayer 10 on Linux and RealPlayer 11 on my Macbook are fine. The latter even does a 1 hour rolling buffer for chase play already, so this isn't really a new feature at all. You just need to go and pull out the proper links and then something like rtsp:// will give you live Radio 1 whenever you want. I really hope they keep the RealPlayer streams as it means not having to run stuff in my browser which I sometimes need to restart when testing software.

  24. Paul

    Wii - don't bother

    >>flashy blade:will it work on wii?

    The Wii iPlayer is a lame duck, poor quality, unable to do true fullscreen and it's diabolically hard controlling it. All the signs of engineers wasting a coffee break on the project...

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    The Nail in RealPlayer's Coffin?

    RealPlayer good buy is been fun……

    At last I can get rid of the worst ever piece of bloated software in the world and the odd 40 pc’s in our building, as the last IT manager installed it to make sure everyone could watch the webcasts of our “local” community website (they use flash now).

    Now I will just plain refuse to use any website that uses RealPlayer, any company who bases their business around this technology deserves to fail – EVOLVE OR DIE

    End Rant (wow that was better than therapy)

  26. Mike Dyne

    Goodbye Real Player,

    Farewell Bloated ware

    It's a long long way to obosoletion,

    And now you're [FINALLY] right there!

    Thankyou ladies and gentlemen! My name is Mike, I'm available for weddings, birthdays, christeing, bar mitzvahs and funerals!

    Thank you! good night!

  27. John Robson Silver badge


    a) too many i's for one cluster

    b) this should be the first* of the set top box versions

    * First, only because they've already announced it - IMHO they should do PS3 and XBox versions, and maybe even deal with pace etc. to make a tiny little iPlayer box.

  28. Rob

    I fourth (fifth?) the overseas concerns.

    If they do cancel the overseas streams I vote we mirror all the main bbc stations output to mp3 and bitorrent the lot.

    Wack a couple of servers running freeview cards on constant record, cutup the files by show time, seed and enjoy.

    I actually do this but with http for recording certain shows to listen to on my mp3 player while abroad, no worries about dodgy connections, nice resumable download.

  29. Peter Lloyd

    Where is it

    Asks for a pass word

  30. Garry Mills

    Radio will live

    I can't see the Beeb turning off radio access for overseas people, a fair few presenters make a point of mentioning when somebody has written in from California or Sydney or wherever saying they are listening to the show

    Now we've had the download Firefox day, how about an uninstall Real day?

  31. Anonymous Coward

    July the 18th 2008 - Real Player Uninstall day

    I know this article is abut iPlayer, its great, its part of my life I couldn’t do without it - this is how is should be right? But my rant - RealPlayer is my biggest software bugbear.

    Can we try and set another software world record - The highest number of uninstalls in a 24 hour period? Lets go for July the 18th 2008? some one setup a site?

  32. J-Wick

    @Neil Greatorex & AC

    Thanks! I'd thought about using a UK proxy but couldn't find one - never knew about virtual server space - got a few days off next week, so I can set up the proxy & play with VMWare at the same time!

    thanks again - really made my day... !

  33. David Austin


    This seems to have turned into some group therapy session over the pain and distraught RealPlayer has caused.

    As far as I'm aware, BBC Was the last Major website to use the dreaded .rm format. Without that, I cannot think of a compelling reason to install it; it has been Usurped by iPlayer.

    No love lost here, the moment I can gleefully hit the uninstall button... then manually clean out the crap it left on the filesystem and registry.

  34. Dan Atkinson

    Don't kill Real yet!

    I've only just got BBC radio streaming through RealPlayer on my N95 and it doesn't come through Nokia Internet Radio yet.

  35. Mark
    Gates Horns

    Still nothing possible on the 360

    Perhaps Sony are paying the BBC to not produce it for the 360.

  36. Nigel Kneale

    Pity RealPlayer is getting droppped

    I used to use mplayer to dump RealAudio streams to WAV files before converting them to MP3s.

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    RE:Still nothing possible on the 360

    "Perhaps Sony are paying the BBC to not produce it for the 360."

    Much more simple - the 360 doesn't have a web browser, and the head of Xbox UK has said they have "no interest" in working with local content providers for marketplace to make any new solution.

    Of course, the 360 can view the files downloaded by a XP or Vista machine as it is compatible with the DRM...

  38. Paul

    Stop it....

    Stop stealing our BBC. We already pay to much for it without people overseas stealing it.

    Oh, and befor anyone starts, please no "its not stealing blahblahblah"

  39. David

    realplayer lives on

    Just tried the new beta - it's still using a 64kb realplayer stream which I'm pleased about; those people who don't like realplayer (I'm one of them) should download The Real Alternative and all will be well.

  40. Anonymous Coward

    Hold the excitement

    First thing I clicked on, just to try:

    ... ... is available in Real Media format only. To play this programme, please install Real Player first.

    I'm, in India, by the way. I know I can't get Beeb TV, I don't know what stage it is going to check my location, as I'm on a new setup, and don't have Real Player yet.

    Would be lovely if I never did have to.

  41. David

    flash is the key...

    If you're in the uk the BBC will direct you to the flash radio service which is unusable if you're using dial-up; to access the real audio stream use a browser that doesn't have flash and you'll get the old lower bitrate real audio file which is intended for listeners outside the uk.

    For some reason the BBC Iplayer help pages choose not to relay this information:

    "In the UK can I play radio programmes with RealPlayer or Windows Media Player rather than Flash?

    No, because BBC iPlayer detects whether you are in the UK and selects the appropriate player as described here. We aim to give you Flash as this gives the best sound quality."

  42. mike


    there used to be people putting BBC stations radio one through five on ixexast which would take the streams worldwide dont know if that still happens

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