This is a guest post by James Doc. James is a Web Technologies student in Lincoln, UK and is a freelance PHP & ASP.NET web designer in his spare time! He gets excited over new gadgets, sci-fi and a wide variety of music. You can read more of Doc’s thoughts on his blog or follow him on Twitter
It is pretty much expected that in this modern day and age people are too busy to actually watch TV live, and will therefore need to catchup later online. If you live in the US the go to TV streaming site is Hulu, in the UK there is a bit more of a choice… All of the major TV channels have their own web streaming service for online catchup; BBC iPlayer, ITV Player, Four On Demand and even Five have their Demand Five service.
iPlayer has always been on the front line of improving and updating the design and features since in went live on Christmas Day 2007. Now in summer 2010, the third release of iPlayer is due out soon, with the beta test site available now.
Alongside a slick new design, making navigation around TV channels, visual and audio content a lot simpler, the site is also branching into the realms of social networking. This includes support for the BBC iD system, which gives one sign in button for all BBC related pages, to allow commenting on news articles, blogs and message boards. Also included is integration for existing networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, allowing users to share their favourite programs via social networking. These upgrades will allow iPlayer to more accurately recommend programs to users based upon what they are watching, and what friends are watching and recommending.
You can check this new update out for yourself at http://beta.bbc.co.uk/iplayer.