Download programmes from BBC iPlayer on your smartphone or tablet

The BBC has updated its iPlayer app for iOS to allow downloading of BBC programmes to your phone or tablet for the first time.

The free iPlayer app for iPod Touch, iPhone and iPad, will now let you download any BBC programmes to any device with iOS 5.1.

You have 30 days to press play on your downloaded content, then 7 days to watch the programme once you first hit play.

Downloads only work over WiFi but will then allow offline viewing of iPlayer content, ideal for flights, commutes or whenever you're without an internet signal.

Here is how you download your favourite TV show:

• Tap the Download option on the programme you want to save

• The programme will be added to your download queue

• When you next connect to Wi-Fi, open the app and the programme will automatically start downloading to your device

The Android iPlayer app has yet to get the update but the BBC says the ability to download programmes from iPlayer on Android phones and tablets will come soon.

As well as being able to watch BBC iPlayer content on your mobile without an internet connection, the ability to download also means you can watch BBC iPlayer programmes abroad for the first time through the app.

You can download multiple programmes at once and queue iPlayer downloads, which will then begin when you have a WiFi connection.

There are also two quality modes, with Standard Quality files encoded at 800kbps and High Quality programmes at 1500kbps, which will take longer to download.

The BBC iPlayer app has gone from strength to strength, with 30m requests for programmes on phones and tablets in July 2012 alone – more than 20% of requests on iPlayer across all platforms.

BBC iPlayer is now on more than 550 devices including smart TVs as well as tablets and phones.

BBC iPlayer has seen 90% year-on-year growth on mobile and 282% y-o-y growth on tablets.

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Joe Cox
Content Director

Joe is Content Director for T3 and What Hi-Fi?, having previously been the Global Editor-in-Chief of What Hi-Fi?. He has worked on What Hi-Fi? across the print magazine and website for more than 15 years, writing news, reviews and features on everything from turntables to TVs, headphones to hi-fi separates. He has covered product launch events across the world, from Apple to Technics, Sony and Samsung; reported from CES, the Bristol Show, and Munich High End for many years; and written for sites such as the BBC, Stuff, and the Guardian. In his spare time, he enjoys expanding his vinyl collection and cycling (not at the same time).