The BBC iPlayer mobile and tablet app has been beefed up to enable users to download shows to view offline.

Initially the update is only available on iOS devices, with Android to follow, and allows users to download shows via wi-fi which can then be viewed when no internet connection is available for up to 30 days.

After a user has started an offline show playing, it will be available for a further seven days.

The move is in response to the steady increase of mobile consumption of BBC content, with 30 million iPlayer requests received in July, a 90% increase year-on-year and accounting for 20% of total views.

It will drive take-up by encouraging those people who have previously been put off streaming content via the app due to the data costs involved and poor connectivity issues.  

Children’s content and BBC3 comedies have been earmarked as genres likely to prove particularly popular as they are already among the most heavily viewed via mobile.

BBC Future Media executive producer of TV and iPlayer mobile David Madden said the new functionality would “transform” viewing.

“Today’s launch is another big step towards ensuring BBC iPlayer and BBC programmes are available wherever and whenever you want,” he said.

“Why not take your favourite shows with you when you go on holiday? You could watch them on the plane, on the beach, anywhere you want.”

This article was first published by Broadcast.