BBC Upset With Microsoft Over Xbox Live Payments

The BBC and Microsoft aren't exactly seeing eye-to-eye at the moment, with the British broadcaster unhappy with the way Microsoft charges users for much its online content.

The dispute is centred around BBC's iPlayer, a service that allows people in the UK to watch BBC programs from their computer, PS3 or Wii. There were also plans to include the iPlayer on the Xbox 360, but because Microsoft insisted on restricting access to the player to paying, Gold subscribers, the BBC are withholding it.

Why? Because the BBC can't charge the British public for access to BBC programs, as use of the iPlayer is already covered under the TV licence fee the Brits have to pay (Americans may wish to read this before continuing).

"Microsoft only wants to offer its users access to platforms it can charge for as this is the model it is pursuing," a BBC source told The Telegraph.

"This does not fit with the BBC's model and Microsoft will not budge at the moment. It is really frustrating for those involved on the BBC side who want to make sure iPlayer is rolled out on as many popular entertainment platforms as possible".

A more subdued, official statement from the BBC reads: "BBC iPlayer has been extremely successful on PS3 and we recently re-launched on Nintendo Wii, from which the public response has been fantastic. People clearly want the BBC iPlayer on their gaming consoles, and we don't think Xbox users are any different, so we've had discussions with Microsoft about bringing the service to the platform."

Xbox 360 iPlayer launch delayed indefinitely [The Telegraph]


    Why can't they just freaking have this one service for free? It's not going to make the planet implode.

    once again gfto micrsoft.

    how bout releasing some tv shows in australia!

      ummm... the ABC version of i-View popped up on my cross media bar on my PS3 about a week ago so it is available here.

      Have to say... the frame rate is pretty rough and the video has no smoothing... pretty disapointing! I wish the video streamed to the PS3's own media player instead of the web based because at the moment the quality sucks, and its much better watching it on my computer =(

        you can blame australias crappy internet for that aswell.

        why would microsoft stop charging for free content when all those happy xbox customers love paying for it and filling up the wallets of microsoft execs?

          Indeed, apparently because you pay for it, its somehow inherently better.

    iView has been perfect for me.

    it's like microsoft charging to watch a music video now. it is ridiculous.
    on my ps3 i have vidzone with thousands of clips for free goddammit.


      I'm rather surprised that Microsoft are charging for music videos as well, given that these are usually free in all available forms of media (save for perhaps video jukeboxes where they still exist in cafes and pubs). Ridonkulous!

    Since this will only be accessible to UK xbox owners anyway (iPlayer tracks IP addresses and restricts them to UK IP's), there's even less reason for MS to be bullish about this.

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