What is 4oD?
4oD is Channel 4’s catch-up and on-demand TV service.
It’s more than just a watch later service like the BBC iPlayer, with a broad range of archive TV shows, films and music from the Channel 4 family, and curated Collections aimed at bringing together similar programming.
Features of 4oD include ‘resume playback’ so anything watched previously will start from where it was last viewed, and My4oD via a web browser lets you download to watch and create playlists of favourite shows.
Is 4oD free?
Everything on 4oD is free, but most of it is advertising-funded, with ads before, during and after shows, just as they would be on TV.
Every user is required to register on 4oD, and Channel 4 increasingly uses this information and your viewing history to offer targeted advertising.
How far back does 4oD catch-up go?
Catch-up on 4oD goes back for 30 days, although many programmes return to 4oD as part of the general archive and Collections.
What are ‘Collections’?
Collections combine shows around themes such a ‘students’ (Fresh Meat, Campus and Faking It), seasonal events, current events or just the whims of Channel 4’s editors.
Can I get 4oD on my TV?
You can also get 4oD on your TV using a PC or Mac attached via the HDMI or VGA port (plus an audio cable), connecting an Android phone or tablet via HDMI, using Airplay on the iPad or iPhone through an Apple TV, or playing over WiFi from a variety of Android devices.
Can I get 4oD on my games console?
The PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 both carry 4oD players. Xbox owners will need an Xbox Live Gold membership to watch.
Can I get 4oD on my mobile phone or tablet?
There are 4oD apps for the iPhone and iPad, and in 2013, 4oD will launch an Android app.
Can I watch 4oD outside the UK and Ireland?
No, Channel 4 does not own the rights to show its programmes outside of the UK and Republic of Ireland, although they may be available through domestic broadcasters.
- 4oD launches on Sky’s Now TV Box
- Sky cineastes in UK and Ireland get Film4 HD movies
- Channel 4 launches 4oD programme downloads for iOS and Android
- Channel 4 launches new 4oD app for Sony PlayStation 3
- Channel 4 details 4oD recommendations and targeted ads
- Freesat says 4oD coming to Free Time in June, contradicts Channel 4
- 4oD coming to Free Time from Freesat this month
- Android app launches, 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and WiFi-only
- Windows 8 app out now, UK first for Channel 4’s iPlayer
- Multi-device ‘pause and play’ coming in 2013
What’s new for 4oD?
Channel 4 has finally granted our wishes and rolled out a 4oD app for Android phones and tablets.
The free app lets you stream a selection of Channel 4 programmes from the last 30 days, including Peep Show, Made In Chelsea, The Undateables and My Mad Fat Diary.
As well as this, you get access to Channel 4’s Collections of classic archive shows like Shameless, Skins and Brass Eye. You can’t currently download individuals programmes and nor can you stream programmes on 3G or 4G – a WiFi connection is needed if you want to use 4oD.
4oD for Android is also only available on those phone and tablets which have upgraded to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich or later. Those of you still on 2.3 Gingerbread or (even worse) 2.2 Froyo should perhaps think about upgrading if you can or even buying a new phone.
We’ve had a quick play around with 4oD for Android and it works nicely enough, though the video quality is a little below what we’d like for an app that only works on WiFi.
As it the case with 4oD elsewhere, you’ll also need to sit through a few adverts before you can start watching but it’s a small price to pay for a free service. Let’s hope that support for 3G streaming and other improvements get rolled out in the future.
Download 4oD from Google Play here.
February 5, 2013
Channel 4 has taken the wrappers off of its sparkling new 4oD app for Windows 8.
The app, which Channel 4 is claiming is the first UK video-on-demand service for Windows 8, is available to download now and gives viewers access to Channel 4’s archive of shows such as Black Books and Father Ted as well as repeats of more current shows including Fresh Meat and Homeland.
This beats the likes of the BBC iPlayer and ITV Player to the punch which have yet to spawn Windows 8 equivalents of their apps.
4oD is also available on iOS, YouTube, YouView, Virgin Media, BT Vision and will be arriving on Android devices, Free Time from Freesat and Samsung smart TVs in 2013.
December 17, 2012
Channel 4 has unveiled a raft of improvements for 4oD in 2012, letting viewers swap devices as they watch, download shows on mobile devices and stream live TV to their mobile.
With a third of Britain’s young adults registered on 4oD, Channel 4 also launched an armada of new tools to help advertisers shake the pennies from their pockets.
Pause-and-play is the most significant new feature for TV viewers, allowing you to swap from, say, your phone to a 40D player on YouView or a Samsung Smart TV.
Channel 4’s commercial and business development director, Sarah Rose said: “We’re very excited to be the first commercial public service broadcaster in the UK to offer mobile offline viewing, enabling our viewers to catch up with Channel 4, wherever they may be.
“And the introduction of ‘Watch Live’ on the move and cross platform ‘Pause and Play’ is great news for our young-skewing audience who are increasingly watching our content on multiple mobile devices.”
Free mobile offline viewing – with advertising – will launch on iOS in early 2013, and on Android later in the year.
The ‘Watch Live’ feature will only be available in the UK, and will cover all Channel 4 channels – including E4, More4, 4Music and FilmFour.
Channel 4 expects to have six million registered E4 viewers by the end of November, with more than 10,000 people signing up daily.
November 9, 2012