Wireless browsers shut out of the Olympics
We don't know where you are
Mobile broadband over 3G may be able to offer speeds to compete with ADSL, but it can't offer access to the Olympics - at least not from the BBC, who are blocking mobile users from video streams of the event to comply with IOC rulings.
Those wanting to watch the latest developments at the Olympics should be sure not to rely on a 3G USB dongle, such as those being pushed so heavily by the mobile operators, as the Beeb is refusing to provide content to those it can't locate. The corporation complains that it can't be absolutely sure where a mobile broadband user is, and they're not going to take any chances upsetting the International Olympic Committee by streaming video out of the country.
The BBC tries, with limited success, to restrict most of its content to UK viewers - we pay the licence fee, after all. But matching an IP address to a physical location is far from an exact science. Satellite broadband users often find themselves traced to the earth-station of their operator, in Belgium or the Netherlands, and thus unable to access content restricted to UK IP addresses. But those using 3G wireless have, so far, been able to freely access content as they could be relied upon to be in the UK.
The problem comes when mobile customers roam to another country - all IP traffic is routed through their home network, so they appear to be still in the UK despite physically being abroad, and that's got the IOC all upset.
Given the price of roaming data, and the small numbers involved, this has never been a significant problem in the past, and mobile broadband users continue to enjoy unrestricted access to the BBC's iPlayer content and all their other services, but the IOC isn't taking any chances and has forced the BBC to block video being streamed to mobile broadband users.
The BBC blames the operators for not being able to inform them where viewers, while the operators say it's nothing to do with them as they just route the data. So the mobile broadband user is stuck reading text descriptions or keeping up to date on the rest of the sports news, if there is any. ®
Know what your paying for...
Although the TV license fee eventually funds the BBC, thats not what were paying for!
The TV licensing money we pay allows us to leagally install & use TV receiving equipment and is sweet FA to do with the content you receive.
When the beeb sign a contract to deliver the olympics transmissions in the UK thats all there allowed to do.
I do however find it bizzare & object to the method they have chosen to restrict access, it's just crazy maaaaadness and a token guesture to keep the IOC quiet!
Sure it's annoying
I live in Belgium. As part of the 37 channels I get through my local cable provider, we get BBC1 and BBC2 along with major channels from the Netherlands, Italy, France, Germany etc.
I don't pay any UK licence fee any more. Maybe a part of my Belgian TV fees goes back to the Beeb? It's a pain that I can't wave my biometrically enhanced British passport in front of my pc to get some Olympic streaming going on.
RE: masses of uninformed dribble above.
"I spend half my time in the UK and the other half in Denmark. I still pay my license fee. Why don't I get a 50% refund for not being able to access iPlayer and such like when I'm not here?"
You can. You can get a refund on any quarters on a television licence where there was no one present in the property.
Maybe some basic research before ranting?
Rights are sold by territory. It doesn't matter where you're from, it matters where you are. Hence if the BBC wants to show content to UK nationals in another country, then they have to buy the rights to air the programme in that country. And that will cost billions of pounds a year. Personally I don't fancy a five fold increase in my licence fee just so you can watch Eastenders on holiday.
An access code would do nothing to change that.