BBC iPlayer, the BBC’s live streaming and catch-up app, is facing ongoing issues on Smart TVs from several popular manufacturers, including Samsung, Sony and Panasonic.
The most recent bug, reported by the BBC this week, is causing the iPlayer app to crash when viewers are trying to watch programmes on several TV models from Samsung (see the full list below).
A separate ongoing issue with Sony TVs is causing the picture on iPlayer programmes to zoom in or get cropped (though Sony is suggesting a workaround that can fix this – see below).
And lastly, a bug that we reported about back in November 2022 – which disabled Ultra HD (4K) support on more than 50 TVs from Toshiba, Panasonic and others – hasn’t been fixed yet.
BBC iPlayer is the free streaming service provided by the BBC, that allows users to watch live and on-demand TV (and radio shows) from the BBC’s archives.
The service was launched in 2007, and has since become one of the most popular streaming services in the UK – although it is still used by a fraction of those who watch the BBC every day.
Initially, iPlayer was only available on desktop computers, but it has since expanded to include streaming devices, Smart TVs and mobile phones.
Over the years, iPlayer has undergone several updates and improvements, and is generally considered quite stable – though errors and crashes do happen occasionally.
BBC iPlayer Samsung Bug
Yesterday (April 19), the BBC informed its users about an issue with the iPlayer app on certain Samsung TVs.
Users with affected TVs from Samsung, are facing crashes (of iPlayer) when they’re attempting to watch programmes.
According to the BBC, Samsung is investigating the issue, hoping to release a fix in a future update (so either an update to the BBC iPlayer app, or to Samsung’s TV operating system on the affected models).
The Samsung models that are currently affected by this bug are:
The BBC has set up a page that will be updated once more information is known.
Cropped BBC iPlayer Bug On Sony TVs
Another ongoing iPlayer bug is affecting those with Sony TVs from 2020.
On the affected models, the playback screen – on the BBC iPlayer app – gets cropped or zoomed-in. Therefore, you may see the picture appearing too big, or it may not fit the entire screen and seem cropped.
Sony has been investigating the issue, and has offered a workaround that should fix this bug for those affected, by changing the display area on the TV:
- Launch your TV app to watch live broadcast content (Otherwise, the display area setting will not be available)
- Go to your TV settings.
- Select Display & Sound.
- Open the Screen setting.
- Choose Display Area and select +1 (The default value is “normal”).
The Sony TVs that are currently affected by this bug are:
- X92 series
- XH90 series
- XH92 series
- A8 series
- A8 series
- A85 series
- A9 series
- XH80 series
- XH81 series
- XH85 series
- XH91 series
- XH95 series
- ZH series
BBC iPlayer 4K Error on Smart TVs
Lastly, a bug that we reported on back in 2022 is sadly still in effect, even though a fix has been worked on since: no 4K / UHD support on some Smart TVs manufactured by Vestel.
Vestel is an electronics giant from Turkey, and is one of the largest TV producers in Europe. However, most customers won’t know it by its original name – as Vestel sells TVs in the UK under licensed brand names such as Toshiba, Panasonic and Hitachi.
According to the BBC, TVs from the following range are affected: Vestel-tv_2019_mb17x_fvp.
Here’s the full list of affected TVs, with their brand names in the UK (if your TV is on this list, 4K / Ultra HD won’t work on BBC iPlayer, on that TV, until the issue is finally fixed) –
If your TV is affected by any of these issues, then as always you can use an external, supported 4K streaming device – such as Amazon’s Fire TV 4K Max, or the Roku 4K Streaming Stick, to watch iPlayer in 4K.
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