In September I was all excited about streaming BBC iPlayer content from an iPhone or iPad to the new Apple TV, based on the fact that AirPlay allows:
Any H.264 content from the web can be broadcast over Airplay to your HDTV.
Except that now iOS 4.2 has been released, it doesn’t work that way. Only audio can be streamed from non-Apple apps, which is frankly rubbish.
But there may be a solution.
All of which means, although for jailbreakers only, there is very likely to be a solution. Very soon, I would expect to see an app available on Cydia that will allow any video to be sent to an Apple TV.
The only remaining problem, which I didn’t think about in my earlier article, is the resolution. The BBC’s H.264 iPhone and iPad streams were not intended to be scaled up to 32′ TV screens. I’ve played BBC iPlayer content through my TV using a component cable; it looked OK, but not great. A far better solution would be for Apple to allow iPlayer streaming direct on the Apple TV – which would require the Beeb to have another, higher-bitrate H.264 stream that will scale to TV sizes. Or perhaps an iPlayer app, if Apple allows Apple TV apps, and the BBC delivers one.