A while ago I wrote about the BBC launching iPlayer for the iPhone. Well, they’ve now gone one better. The whole iPlayer site has been redesigned, as detailed in this BBC Internet Blog post. But when you log onto it from an iPhone, you now get an iPhone-optimised site.
As with many other successful iPhone-optimised sites (such as Facebook), it uses a tabbed interface and really focuses on the essentials.
It’s much more navigable – no more pinching and zooming – and a great improvement, as you can see from the screenshots.
The only downside I can currently see is that, unlike the new desktop version, the iPhone-specific iPlayer does not include radio. That’s a shame, as I would love to be able to get BBC radio stations through my mobile. But although the desktop version delivers radio in mp3 format, it does so through an embedded Flash player. This scuppers it for the iPhone as the device doesn’t support Flash. The only way that the iPhone will also play radio is if a DRM hole is opened for radio as with TV. Or if an unofficial downloader is created.
One last question: will the BBC allow 3G iPhones to stream TV when they’re using the mobile (i.e. non-Wifi) network? Well, this has been answered, and it’s no. Wifi-only for now.
See below for more screenshots.