Why won't my downloaded programmes play on my computer or laptop?

Download | Under investigation

*** Update: Thursday 12 September *** 

We're aware that some people are unable to play the programmes they've downloaded to the BBC iPlayer Downloads application on their computer. Some people have reported: 

  • programmes simply will not play
  • a continuous spinning circle
  • a "This content doesn't seem to be working" error message
  • a "DRM licence failed" message

After further investigation, we believe these symptoms are related to a small part of the downloaded file not being in the correct format since a Google update. It's probable that you attempted to download the programme before this particular Google update. However, there are some steps to try to resolve this:

  • Make sure you're using the latest version of the BBC iPlayer Downloads application. Open the application, go to Settings, and click Check for Updates
  • Use the Retry button. This will attempt to fix the download (without downloading it anew).  
  • Right-click on the name of the programme within the BBC iPlayer Downloads application and select Renew licence

We're continuing to investigate reports from people who are still having issues after trying these steps and we'll update this page with any further information.

Programme buffering?

If the programme you've downloaded is buffering when you try to play it, check that the programme has fully downloaded. You can start to play back a programme before the whole programme has downloaded. If the whole programme has not downloaded, you might experience buffering.