According to BBC radio stream page: "The way we stream radio is changing so we'll no longer be providing Windows Media Audio streams. Here's all you need to know about the change. ... / ... We have now (Feb 2015) started switching off Windows Media Audio for on-demand and Live radios streams will follow soon after .../... For live radio, each station will now be broadcast in the SHOUTcast mp3 format. This should work for most devices."

Then, since the beginning of februar 2015, *.asx streams of BBC radios (like asx stream of Radio1 for example) can not be played anymore with Rhythmbox. Playing this BBC radios axs streams, gives a voice explaining that this format is not supported any more.

Then, how could BBC music live radios (Radio1, Radio2, Radio6, ...) be now listened accross Rhythmbox ? Which stream format ? Which urls ?

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    Very helpful, especially as the BBC will not disclose the URLs for their replacement feeds. Clearly they don't really want anyone to listen any more. I wrote them and asked for a URL for Radio 3 and received this response: Thank you for contacting the BBC iPlayer Support Team. I understand you would like a URL for the new ACC stream. We are currently only sharing links to our new streams with aggregators and device manufacturers. We are not currently making the links for the new Shoutcast and HLS streams publicly available. Whilst it was previously our policy to share these we found that we co – user378118 Feb 12 '15 at 13:45
  • get_iplayer comes to mind, which I think can stream as well as download. You probably shouldn't use it if you like the BBC rules (BBC's Online Managing Editor's stance on 3rd Party stuff here - this was cited as a reason the original dev of get_iplayer dropping support) – Wilf Mar 26 '15 at 21:18

There are still MP3-based and AAC+ streams. The BBC doesn't directly maintain a list of these URLs but I have found a few. This is the best one I've found so far.

The problem here is most of the playlist items are hosted on RadioFeeds, not by the BBC. If RadioFeeds went down, you'd lose radio. The files they host are actually pretty slim playlist wrappers to stream URLs that are hosted on behalf of the BBC. You can use a little bit of CLI magic to get a list of direct URLs:

$ wget -qO- http://www.radiofeeds.co.uk/bbcradio{1,2,3,4fm}.pls | grep -Po '(?<=File1=)[^?]+'

This site also has some direct .pls files for AAC+ that the BBC hosts. These are probably a better option in the long run.

$ wget -qO- http://www.listenlive.eu/uk.html | grep -Eo 'http://www\.bbc\.co\.uk.*.pls'
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    However, although gstreamer is installed, those .pls streams can not be opened by the Rhythmbox used on my Ubuntu 14.04: a small forbid icon appears when I try to launch it. – user301828 Feb 10 '15 at 8:03
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    As some other .pls streams are played fine (ie: this 128k mp3 stream as explained here, I imagine there must be a problem with BBC .pls streams given above. – user301828 Feb 10 '15 at 8:18
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    Alas, all the Shoutcast ones have as of 26 March disappeared too apart from the World Service. (Thanks to johnb on the BBC internet blog) the HLS AAC streams are of the form http://a.files.bbci.co.uk/media/live/manifesto/audio/simulcast/hls/uk/sbr_high/ak/bbc_6music.m3u8 Unfortunately, Rhythmbox doesn't deal with m3u8 chunking yet, although VLC and Audacious are OK. – Cedric Knight Mar 26 '15 at 21:04
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    @CedricKnight - ubuntu 15.04 plays these streams ok - probably because it has the latest gstreamer libraries. – fossfreedom Mar 26 '15 at 23:24
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    @fossfreedom What I actually meant was that the URLs from listenlive.eu above like http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/listen/live/r6_aaclca.pls now only give a message "This Shoutcast stream is no longer available... please contact your device manufacturer". MP3 streams like http://bbcmedia.ic.llnwd.net/stream/bbcmedia_6music_mf_p are still working (including in Rhythmbox under 14.04) but may be phased out after a year. The BBC's moving to HLS and then MPEG-DASH, so will we need libdash (not currently in repos)? – Cedric Knight Mar 28 '15 at 20:28

My understanding is that you can no longer use Rhythmbox and similar apps to listen to BBC stations. I usually point my browser at bbc.co.uk/radio and select the station I want to listen to from there.

The links provided by Oli however do work well with Rythmbox.

  • This works fine in firefox – Elder Geek Feb 9 '15 at 14:37
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    Yes, I confirm: the launch of the "listen live" service delivered by BBC accross its iplayer radio, runs fine in a browser. However, that's not solve the use of rhythmbox to listen the new pls streams from BBC. – user301828 Feb 10 '15 at 7:58

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