4oD was replace by All 4 on Monday March 30, 2015
See All 4

Launched in November 2006, 4oD stands for “4 on Demand”, an Internet Television service which allows some internet, Virgin Media, TalkTalk TV and BT Vision users to view programming recently shown on Channel 4, E4 or More4, or from their archives.
4oD also includes a selection of films and content from the National Geographic Channel and FX (UK).
The cable version is operated through an appropriate set top box whilst the Internet variant requires the installation of a free piece of software, which allows users to download the programmes to a computer for viewing.

As of April 2009, the Internet version is fully available to Windows, Mac and Linux users so long as Adobe Flash Player is installed. The “Catch-up” service offers content free of charge for both streaming and downloaded versions of a programme for thirty days after its broadcast on Channel 4.

Some content is available free of charge, whilst most other programmes and films, including archive programming, is charged for on a per-download basis, typically around 99p per standard programme or £1.99 per film.

Video can be viewed multiple times, for up to forty-eight hours after the first time it was played, or for a month until played.
The video on the internet service is advertised as being ‘DVD quality’ (videos are all H.264 MP4 format), and estimates download time to be around twice the programme length on an average broadband connection, though speeds vary dramatically dependent on ISP, connection speed and other factors, and may be less or more than this.
At this time, not all content is available to Irish users, due to licensing restrictions, however the majority of the programming is available.

A Download to Own (DTO) or “Buy” feature was once available on selected content, allowing users to purchase a programme and keep it for as long as they wish. This service has now been suspended alongside the application to power it, in favour of further investment into their online cross platform catch-up service powered by Adobe Flash.
NOTE: UK only IP restrictions apply to all VOD services on 4OD.

See the 4OD website.


Bitrates on 4oD

c4-watchliveVideo quality on 4oD varies greatly depending on which platform content is being viewed, at best, quality can reach halfway between SD and HD quality, around 2400kbps on Samsung Smart TVs.

On computers, video quality on 4oD depends on when content was added to their catalogue, the oldest programmes seem to be in low quality, while more recent additions are close enough to standard definition to enjoy even on the largest of computer screens. The average bitrates on 4oD are around 1530kbps for newer content, this is more or less standard definition.

On iOS devices, 4oD content has an average bit rate of 1320kbps, this is quite adequate for the iPhone, iPad and for using AirPlay.
On Android devices the average bitrate on 4oD is around 1810kbps.
On Xbox One the average bitrates are around 1720kbps
On NOW TV/Roku devices Video quality is good, though not the best 4oD has to offer. On average bitrates are around 1790kbps which was slightly higher than standard definition.

The highest bitrates and Video quality are available on Samsung Smart TVs. Channel 4 have not disclosed details on the bitrate they use.
On average bitrates average between 1600kbps and 2400kbps.

Although not quite HD, content on 4oD is around half way between the BBC’s SD streams (1500kbps) and their HD streams (3200kbps).

Bitrates on Channel 4 Live Streams

Channel 4 offer live streams of their channels through 4 live on the web, offering surprisingly good video quality even at full screen. The average bitrate is around 820kbps, this is sub-SD video quality.



Subtitles are available for certain 4oD content. If subtitles are available an “S” button will be visible in the video player. Click on the “S” and the subtitles will load and be displayed. Not all of the content will have subtitles. And subtitles may become available at a later date after the programme has been available.


PIN Protected Content

Channel4.com provides access to content reflecting the broad range of Channel 4’s programmes which may be unsuitable for younger viewers.
In order to help you control access to the content on Channel4.com from your computer, they have provided a PIN (Personal Identification Number) system.
This will enable you to set a PIN to prevent anyone viewing the content you choose to restrict access to. You may find this helpful to ensure children and younger viewers in your household can only view content that is appropriate for them.


DRM – Digital Rights Management

DRM stands for Digital Rights Management, which is a software system used to administer and protect the licences of video, music and other assets in a digital environment. 4oD uses Adobe’s RTMP-E solution to prevent unauthorised access to Channel 4 programmes.


Minimum operating requirements to watch 4oD


hollyoaks2For 4oD programmes and video clips the video is viewed in flash, and therefore you will need to have Adobe Flash 10.2 or higher. Mac users will need Adobe Flash 10. You can download Flash at www.adobe.com (opens in a new window). Some of our Flash video, (mainly short-form video clips across channel4.com and E4.com), is delivered using the Brightcove platform and video player, and you can see the systems requirements on their website: Brightcove
(opens in a new window)

For you to enjoy the best possible user experience we recommend that you have the following:
Latest version of Microsoft Windows or OSX.
A broadband internet connection.
We recommend use of the service with the following browsers: Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher, Firefox latest versions of 2.0 or 3.0, Safari – latest version. The site will work with other browsers, but the user experience may not be as satisfactory.

Javascript should be turned on in your browser.
Cookies enabled (Internet Explorer security settings set to medium).

4oD on iOS

4od-guidanceThe 4oD on iOS app is only available with an internet connection; you can browse and watch video using 3G/4G or Wi-Fi connectivity.
You need iOS 7 or above to use the 4oD application. You can check which operating system your iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch is currently using by going to Settings > General > About – and scrolling down to Version.
Older generation devices are not supported – these include iPhone 3G and second generation iPod Touch devices.

4oD on Android

The 4oD on Android app is only available with an internet connection; you can browse and watch video using 3G/4G or Wi-Fi connectivity.
You need Android OS 4.0.4 and above. For security reasons, rooted devices are not supported.

4oD on Xbox 360

You will need a broadband internet connection connected to the Xbox.
You will need to download the 4oD app from the ‘Apps’ section of Xbox LIVE.
HDMI compatible TV

4oD on Xbox One

You will need a broadband internet connection (wired or Wi-Fi) connected to the Xbox One.
You will need to download the 4oD app from the “Store” section or the “Apps channels” section of Xbox LIVE.
HDMI compatible TV

4oD on YouView

YouView set top box.
A broadband internet connection connected to the YouView Box with a minimum speed of 3MB.
You must accept 4oD Terms and conditions to watch 4oD content

4oD on PS3

You will need to have a Sony PSN account.
A broadband internet connection connected to the PS3.
To download the 4oD app to your PS3, make sure you are signed in and the PS3 is connected, and then select the TV icon on the XMB (Xross Media Bar) and opt for the 4oD icon.

Now TV/Roku

You will need a Now TV membership or Roku account.
One of the supported devices: Now TV, Roku 3, Roku 2XS and Roku LT (Giga.
A broadband (wired or Wi-Fi) internet connection.
You will need to download the app from the Roku Channel Store.
HDMI compatible TV.

Panasonic TV

Panasonic 2014 TV
Freetime User Interface (UI)
Broadband connectivity

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