BBC iPlayer freezing

Discussion in 'iPad Help' started by vitesse67, Jan 27, 2011.

  1. vitesse67
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    vitesse67 iPF Noob

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    Hi, I can't find any existing threads on this problem so here goes.

    I live in the UK and have a 20Mb (actual measured) internet connection. The problem I have is that when I try and play anything from the BBC iPlayer, it will play for anything from 7 to 30 mins or so and then freeze as though it's buffering with the little arrowed circle in the middle of the screen. I am playing from either Safari or Atomic Browser and the results are the same.:(

    If I come out of the playback and try again, it will again freeze sometimes at the same point and other times a few min's further in. If you just leave it - well lets say I got bored after about 40mins !!!

    I have tried this on both my home network (via 802.11n wifi network) and at work on a 3.7Mb internet link (and 802.11g wifi) with the same results.

    I can play the same iPlayer programs on a laptop or my iPod touch with no problems, it's just the iPad.

    I contacted Apple support and the adviser tried and found the same problem on her iPad!

    I've search a few forums and can't find any reports of this phenomena so "has anyone else got this problem?"

    I can't believe that the BBC iplayer is inherently causing this problem and no-one else isn't shouting about it.:mad:
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2011
  2. simon_phillips_81669
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    simon_phillips_81669 iPF Noob

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    Freezing iPlayer on iPad

    I have an identical issue - mine freezes after 5-6 minutes and won't move on, I too am using safari and with the latest ios update installed. The only way around this is to restart the programme, fast forward to the point where I left off and press play from there which lasts for another 5-6 minutes - incredibly frustrating. I have also tried on my iPhone and get the same results whilst my laptop and IMac over the exact same home wifi network work perfectly. Does anybody know the reason for this / have a solution? Is it a settings issue on the iPad??
  3. Tim SPRACKLEN
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    Tim SPRACKLEN iPad Legend

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    I have the same problem too. However I found that if I hit 'pause' and then 'play' it will restart from the point where it froze - i.e. no need to fast forward. It is very frustrating, as you said. I became so crazy that I downloaded the programmes I was trying to watch ('Silent Witness' and 'The Killing') from the iTunes store and watched them using the iPad video player (yes, I had to pay for them ;-(( but at least they play with no problems and I can watch them off-line). I think it's a secret BBC policy to get us to pay again for content....

    Tim
    Scotland
  4. Hasty
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    Hasty iPad Ninja

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    Wonder if this is recent, as I've watched more than an hours worth in the past with no problems? Have you tried rebooting your iPad to clear your memory before running the program?
    Just a thought, but remember that the graphics chip takes a large chunk of your system memory.
    Theres an article in MacWorld today regarding some peoples problems running the netflix app when they haven't cleared their memory.
    In the article there's reference to an app that can flush your mem. So as it was so cheap I downloaded it and have given it a shot this morning. Only test so far was to run it once. Result when first loaded it said free memory 8.4. After clicking on the not so obvious button it reported 30.8 free. YMMV.

    I personally use iCab browser for iPlayer as it firstly plays full screen without that annoying navigation bar and it also allows you to change your browser ID. Mine's set to firefox as I dislike iPlayers miserly mobile interface.
  5. vitesse67
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    vitesse67 iPF Noob

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    I've tried a complete re-boot of my iPad (hold home and pwr off for 20 sec) and downloaded iCab - great browser by the way - thanks :)

    So far so good. I managed to play all of QI XL yesterday and Being Human - however this had a little freeze but cleared itself after 15 sec.

    I'm going to try Safari today and see if its the browser or the reset that may have done the trick.

    Let you know!
  6. Hasty
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    Hasty iPad Ninja

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    Good to hear Vi.. I note that iCab updated it's app yesterday and it said something about cacheing improvements, but I haven't tried to test it in any way.

    Slightly off topic, in a further test I've been pleasantly surprised by that memory clearing app.
    Have a train simulator which my two yearold loves but it's recently taken to crashing a lot since the last OS upgrade. Very graphics intensive.
    Just switched on, cleared memory and fired it up. It's been running on the side of my desk for twenty minutes now. Longest yet.

    Clearing your iPad's memory | Entertainment | Mac 911 | Macworld
  7. ossian72
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    ossian72 iPF Noob

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    On Friday I had around 2 hours uninterrupted perfect streaming... today, buffering and sticking every 15 mins... Is there anything I can do to make iPlayer reliable and consistent?
  8. Hasty
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    Hasty iPad Ninja

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    Problems probably at the server end.
    I find time of day very influential on streaming.
    After 5pm jerkovision....
  9. gpk
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    gpk iPF Noob

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    Interesting to find this topic, especially the comment about server problems. I've had this sporadic freezing problem ever since I've had an iPad. No improvement in 9 months, and same problem with iplayer app and also web version.

    After reading the above I suspect there are 2 problems here. Firstly insufficient bandwidth at the BBC end. Secondly, the player can't cope if its buffer completely empties.

    A workaround that seems to work is to hit pause when the programme starts loading, or from time to time, to ensure that the buffer is nice and full. All a bit feeble really; I suspect the iPad iplayer (web and app version) was thrown together on a shoestring and my impression is that the BBC don't seem to have much interest in making it work properly.
  10. gpk
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    gpk iPF Noob

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    Well I spoke too soon. Can't get more than a couple of minutes out of the iplayer at the moment. If I try to jump to a new position in the programme it freezes up straight away. Completely useless!!
  11. greebo7uk
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    greebo7uk iPF Noob

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    I am getting the same problem. Fine on my mac book pro and iPhone 4 but really unreliable on the iPad. Sometimes I can get an hour or so straight through (rarely though) but the norm is at least once every 20mins.
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