Top 5 Facts: BBC iPlayer

Mobile viewing

iPlayer usage on mobiles peaks after midnight, as teenagers sneakily watch under the covers. There’s also a peak at the weekend, on Saturday and Sunday mornings (8am-10am).

Server power

The BBC uses a total of 60 servers to encode its programmes for iPlayer. More than 400 hours of programmes are converted each week.

Essential Delay

If your programme isn’t available on iPlayer the instant it has finished broadcasting, that’s usually because it was broadcast live. It takes about an hour to process the tape.


The iPlayer shifts more than seven petabytes of web traffic every month; that’s seven million gigabytes, or approximately 7,000,000,000,000,000 bytes. That’s a lot of bytes!

Stream count

BBC iPlayer handles around 117 million stream requests a month across all platforms, including the iPlayer service on Virgin Media TV.