The iPlayer, which is a popular video-on-demand service offered by the BBC in the UK, is getting a lot more social. A new beta version ties into both Facebook and Twitter (for starters), offering users the option to let friends know what they’re viewing and recommend different shows.
This integration was accomplished through the creation of a new login called a BBC iD, and it’s supposed to offer a bit beyond the standard click-here-go-there functionality, effectively creating a "social recommendation ecosystem."
A post on the BBC Internet Blog explained, "[U]sers can then connect with Facebook, Twitter or any other social network that we choose to partner with in the future, . . . Basically, we use your external social graph to connect you with your friends within the iPlayer site, and make it scalable for other BBC Online services in the fullness of time."
A whole lot of people will probably take advantage of this solution. Facebook and Twitter are well-liked, of course, and since the iPlayer acts as a window to fun shows like Top Gear and Doctor Who, it also sees quite a lot of use. Combining everything seems like a natural step.
Anyway, other new iPlayer features include a fancy "Favourites" feature, improved inter-device communication, and the option to sync a program’s playback among a group of friends.