It sure has been a long time coming, but finally the BBC iPlayer application has been updated to allow streaming over 3G. The app itself has been with us since February 2011 in WiFi only form, but all that changes from today.
3G streaming works for both video and audio content. The BBC have been working alongside the British carriers in bringing this to the market, and have pledged that it works on all UK mobile networks.
On top of 3G streaming, feedback regarding the quality of the video has been addressed. Work has been done to improve this taking advantage of an updated Flash Player.
At first glance, 3G streaming seems to work very well. However, I'm still not convinced the video quality is anything to write home about. In an area of full signal on Three UK's HSPA+ network the video quality was significantly poorer than most videos streamed from YouTube. Still, the BBC have made the leap, and have already said the app will continue to evolve and be refined.
One last point to note, 3G streaming doesn't work on Honeycomb -- and one would presume Ice Cream Sandwich -- tablets. BBC still have some work to do on refining the experience for larger devices, so for now 3G streaming requests will re-direct to the mobile website.
Download links can be found after the break.
More: BBC Internet Blog