Feeds

Steve Jobs rescues freetards from BBC iPlayer wilderness (for now)

iPhone streams start DRM-free download party

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Enterprising Linux hackers have built a new way to download BBC iPlayer programmes that lets online viewers store shows indefinitely - and it's all thanks to Steve Jobs.

Last week, Auntie launched the streaming version of iPlayer for the Jesus Phone and iPod Touch. It's meant transcoding shows to the H.264 format used by Apple's QuickTime player - and a whole raft of other players on all platforms - because Steve Jobs doesn't think Adobe Flash video is good enough to appear on his magnificent tool.

The BBC has "secured" this non-DRM'd stream using the awesome power of browser user agent strings, which are trivial to manipulate. Consequently, penguin fanciers have quickly cobbled together hacks that will grab the whole show as a 512Kb/s video download.

Such files have the advantage that they won't go pop after 30 days because of the Windows Media timebombing that third-party TV production firms have negotiated as a condition of shows being downloadable via the official iPlayer desktop client. Hobbyists have aped the process of grabbing DRM-free downloads on Windows and Mac OS X too.

In a statement, a BBC spokeswoman said: "This is not unusual or surprising. We are working with our partners to ensure that our content is delivered to users in a secure way.

"We have made it clear that BBC iPlayer on iPhone and iTouch is currently in beta, which enables us to pick up on such issues and find a solution before we roll the service out in full in due course."

The BBC says an official Mac download client will be available this year, and a Linux one "within two years".

You can read all about it here, here, and here.

Thanks to all those who wrote in about this. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Xperia Z3: Crikey, Sony – ANOTHER flagship phondleslab?
The Fourth Amendment... and it IS better
Don't wait for that big iPad, order a NEXUS 9 instead, industry little bird says
Google said to debut next big slab, Android L ahead of Apple event
Microsoft to enter the STRUGGLE of the HUMAN WRIST
It's not just a thumb war, it's total digit war
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
A drone of one's own: Reg buyers' guide for UAV fanciers
Hardware: Check. Software: Huh? Licence: Licence...?
The Apple launch AS IT HAPPENED: Totally SERIOUS coverage, not for haters
Fandroids, Windows Phone fringe-oids – you wouldn't understand
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.