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BBC iPlayer

BBC iPlayer is a free online video streaming service where you can watch and listen to BBC radio and TV programmes. You can also stream BBC channels live. It is available on desktop, mobile, games consoles and smart TVs.

13+

Official age rating

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Our safety ratings

Overall safety rating:

Our overall rating for BBC iPlayer

Good

A child’s account (under 13) on BBC iPlayer must be registered by an adult over the age of 18. This gives parents and carers access to parental controls to help limit what their child can watch and do across the BBC website. You can also add a child’s profile to an existing account.

By default, accounts for under 13s will not be able to see content rated over PG. You can also set up a ‘parental guidance lock’ to help limit which users on your account can access programmes that contain adult themes.

Safety features

You can choose to set up a child’s account on BBC iPlayer for kids under 13. This will give you access to parental controls that can help you manage what they watch.

This type of account will give your child access to child-friendly TV shows shown on CBBC, CBeebies and other suitable BBC programmes. Unlike other video-on-demand platforms, you can’t set locks on individual profiles. This means your child could watch content that might not be suitable by accessing your profile or one set up for an older sibling.

However, it is possible to set up a ‘parental guidance lock’. This means that whenever anyone using your profile wants to watch something that has been shown after the watershed, they will have to enter a four-digit pin. When you set up a pin, avoid using dates or birthdays that your child might be able to guess.

Privacy & location

Setting up a child account will also give them access to other online children’s BBC services where they can comment on posts and share images and comments for other children to see. Other users will be able to see their username so make sure to help them pick one that doesn’t contain any personal information. We would recommend reading BBC’s Privacy Notice for Children's Uploads.


The app doesn’t share your location.

Reporting & blocking

As there are no communication features available on BBC iPlayer, there is no reporting tool.

You can’t block specific programmes on the platform but you can set up a ‘parental guidance lock’ on 13+ accounts. This means that your child won’t be able to watch programmes that contain adult themes such as sex, drug use or strong language without entering a four-digit pin.

Content

As there are no communication features available on BBC iPlayer, there is no reporting tool.

You can’t block specific programmes on the platform but you can set up a ‘parental guidance lock’ on 13+ accounts. This means that your child won’t be able to watch programmes that contain adult themes such as sex, drug use or strong language without entering a four-digit pin.

Top tips

To manage what your child can watch on BBC iPlayer we would recommend creating them a separate child’s profile. You can do this in two ways, either by giving them permission to create their own account or adding a child’s profile to your account.

We would recommend adding a child’s account to your own profile so you can easily access the parental controls in the future.

To add a child’s profile, you need to:


1) Select the pink monster icon when you open the app.
2) Choose a display name for your child. We would recommend using a nickname.
3) Enter your child’s date of birth. This means they’ll only be shown content that is suitable for their age group.
4) If there is more than one adult profile on your account you will need to choose which account you’d like it linked to.

You can create more than one child’s account under an adult’s account.

Set up a ‘parental guidance lock’ to stop your child from accessing and watching adult programmes on your profile. There are different ways to set this up depending on the device you’re using.

Website

1) Find a programme that has a G symbol next to it. This means that it contains adult themes.
2) Hit the play button and select ‘Turn on PG lock’.
3) Choose and enter a four-digit pin.

App
1) Go to ‘Menu’ and select ‘Settings’.
2) Select ‘Parental Guidance’.
3) Enter a four-digit pin.
4) Choose a secret question and answer. This will be used to confirm you’re over 16 in case you forget your pin.
5) Tap ‘Activate’.

Next time someone on the account tries to watch something rated G, they will have to enter the pin.

Before you let your child use their iPlayer profile sit down with them and explore it together so they know how to use it.

You might also want to use this opportunity to set some rules around when they can use it. For example, they might be allowed to watch it in their room at the weekend or for a set amount of time each day. Whatever you decide, write the rules down in a family agreement so your child knows where they stand.

If you have a younger child then we would recommend supervising them when they’re watching programmes online.

Show your child how to pause a video or close the app in case they watch something that upsets them and want to stop it playing. Remind them to always come to you if they feel worried or upset by something they’ve seen.

O2 Guru top tip

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Explore BBC iPlayer’s guide for parents

Check out BBC’s guidance for parents that outline the different parental controls available.

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