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Lost functionality on latest listen again iPlayer

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  • Message 1. Posted by seansverige (U14832493) on , permalink

    The recently facelifted radio iPlayer has, intentionally or otherwise, lost a couple of detailed functions that were useful.

    I listen to R1/Xtra, 2, 4 & 6music pretty much exclusively on listen again. Sometimes I skip back to either catch something I misheard or simply to listen again (again) to some fantastic new song I won't actually be able to buy for months.

    Previously, if you dragged the bullet along the progress bar, the played time updated realtime, allowing you to easily judge how far to move back or forth. This is no longer the case, so it's a complete guess - especially as moving the bullet doesn't actually result in a linear response as it did previously.

    Worse, this has been further complicated by a 'snapback', i.e. you have to drag bullet beyond a certain threshold before any change occurs - else it just snaps back to it's prior position, as if elasticated; this pretty much destroys the ability to fine tune your position by anything less than 3-5 minutes - or about the length of a pop song....

    In addition, tapping the old bullet skipped it forward by ~2mins; very handy for skipping through last weeks news bulletin. This too has been lost.

    To avoid taking up unnecessary space on my already crowded taskbar I usually force iPlayer to open in a new tab within my browser. I prefer the embedded player - but if there's a rhyme or reason to which shows this is available for I've yet to divine it. The listen again iPlayer isn't smart enough to re-size to current window, which doesn't help; admittedly this was the case with the previous iPlayer, but is more of an issue given the fine control issues stated above.

    In the grand scheme of things I know this isn't a big deal, and I don't know what prompted the latest changes, but it's a shame that this detailed, but fairly basic, has been lost along the way.

    I say basic because this is how most other media players have and continue to work, which brings me to an enhancement suggestion: to pause iPlayer using the space bar (as opposed to explicitly clicking the relatively small pause / play button), just like you can with nearly every other media player out there - including youtube.

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  • Message 2. Posted by Dark-Avised (U13687731) on , permalink

    The old-style iPlayer is still available with a bit of effort, for example this link plays Monday's Radcliffe&Maconie show in RadioPlayer www.bbc.co.uk/iplaye...

    Change "console" to "episode" in the link, open in a new tab, and it plays in the old iPlayer www.bbc.co.uk/iplaye...

    I don't know how long that capability will last.

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  • Message 3. Posted by Fortyfab (U14837225) on , permalink

    I totally agree with seansverige - why change something that worked perfectly well? I use iplayer a lot to listen to programs I miss and, more importantly, use the timing of the bullet along the progress bar to find the songs/narrative I really like. And that fact that the new updated version doesn't allow this is really pain in the rear!

    Thanks to Dark-Avised, the old iplayer IS still available (thanks) although I am a little confused with the instructions - when I open a program this way, 'episode' already shows in the link and plays in the old iplayer style!? Perhaps it's because I use a Mac?

    Anyhow, I would prefer it if the iplayer could be reverted back to the old version where it was much more user friendly!

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  • Message 4. Posted by Dark-Avised (U13687731) on , permalink

    Sorry, my preferred way to access listen-again content is through the /programmes pages, like www.bbc.co.uk/6music...

    My example referred to that.

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  • Message 5. Posted by ChrisABZ (U14546647) on , permalink

    Agreed!
    Major loss. The timeline was helpful when skipping the news, crap songs etc.

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  • Message 6. Posted by seansverige (U14832493) on , permalink

    Have now also posted this as a complaint, as restoring lost functionality is a 'suggestion' that in an ideal world one should never have to make. Thanks for the tip but either I'm doing it wrong, or the access to the old iPlayer was a loophole since closed.

    Am now also experiencing reliability issues where player just stops and on a few occasions even a refresh hasn't worked so had to start a new session. Admittedly I was cutting it fine with RadcliffeMaconie yesterday, but the19th April show disappeared at 15h45 and even though webpage showed it as available for 15mins, pressing iPlayer link from any page looped back to R&M show homepage.

    I didn't know this iPlayer version was coming (did anyone?), and can only find references to latest version of iPlayer desktop in news (was it related to this?): advance notice and specific channel for feedback would have been nice.

    When testing new software, as well as validating new functionality, confirming that existing functionality remains unchanged is a key objective - one that they've have clearly failed to achieve in this case.

    On the off chance anyone relevant does read this, I hereby I volunteer my time for free to participate in any beta / UAT testing of future iPlayer versions (not a developer but am involved in software design and test on a professional basis)

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  • Message 7. Posted by seansverige (U14832493) on , permalink

    Just been looking at iPlayer on wiki and saw that there was a beta period for version 3, but as someone who doesn't use iPlayer desktop and listens via show's website (rather than iplayer site) this managed to pass me by completely.

    However this latest release still seems to have come from nowhere

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  • Message 8. Posted by SpiralArms (U14852585) on , permalink

    Just to add a "me too" to the request to bring back the time to the radio iplayer slider.

    However, thanks to the poster for the suggestion to switch back to the old player. It still works for me. eg last Fridays Rad and Mac, the iplayer link on their pages takes you to:

    www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/console/b010b8l1

    but if you change "console" to "episode" and put:

    www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b010b8l1

    into your browser, you get the old player back.

    Neil

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  • Message 9. Posted by seansverige (U14832493) on , permalink

    Thanks to both of you; was a bit slow on the uptake but got there in the end, now listening

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