How To Play

How to operate the App

Expanded version

In App purchasing offers vast numbers of real BBC subjects. Create your own subject collections! 

Compatibility: Requires iOS 7.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimised for iPhone 5, iPhone 6, and iPhone 6 Plus.

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Just a Minute App approved!
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App submitted to Apple App Store
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First, install the free app

This app will soon be  available on the Apple App Store

Visit the Apple App Store on your iPhone or iPad and search for "Just a Minute" .


Install the free app. It takes Just a Minute!  

This free app offers in-app purchases.

Play on one iPad, or use multiple iPhones and/or iPads and iPod Touches.  

Some find it best when the chairman uses a dedicated device.  An iPad, iPod Touch or an iPhone can be chairman.

It’s probably ideal for every player to have his own device as a buzzer, but when there are not enough to go around, two buzzers can share a single iPhone or iPod Touch, and four buzzers can share one iPad!

These different possibilities allow players to take advantage of the availability of many devices when these happen to be around, yet still to play a great game even when only a single iPad is available - that just involves sitting rather more closely together!

Bluetooth (or multi-device) mode

This mode uses Bluetooth 4.0 to let the chairman know when a buzzer was pressed. The iPhone 4s and the iPad 3 were the first to support Bluetooth 4.0, so these are the earliest devices that can be used to play in this mode. It won’t work on an iPhone 4 or earlier, nor an iPad 2 or earlier because Bluetooth 4.0 had not been invented when these devices were designed.

When the app loads, it’s probably best to select Chairman on an iPad, and select Player(s) on each of up to six iPhones. Player(s) means buzzer(s). Of course, when there are more players than available devices, multiple buzzers can share a device as described above.

If no iPads are available, Chairman can be selected on an iPhone or iPod Touch. This works perfectly well especially when the players are familiar with the game, but the smaller screen cannot accommodate context help text, so it might be helpful to look at options/help before playing (i.e. this text).

As you will see, there are many possible ways to set up a game of Just a Minute, depending on what devices are available.

To start, first switch on Bluetooth (on every device). Then load the Just a Minute app on all devices that will be Players (i.e. Buzzers), and enter the names of those playing – up to six. If this is not the first game, then the names used last time will appear by default, saving time and typing. Check that no two names are the same as that is sure to lead to confusion. Then load the app on the chairman’s device, and select Chairman.

After a moment, the Chairman will detect the players, and ask whether to allow connections from the buzzer devices. Usually the chairman finds all buzzers within seconds, but sometimes a few more seconds are needed.

(This question is to allow more than one game to take place within a small area. When more than one Chairman is running, care must be taken to allow connection only from the correct players.)

Normally, the chairman will start by selecting the option New Game.

The player whose turn it is to speak has his name highlighted both on the chairman's screen and on his buzzer. The subject that he must talk about is also displayed both on the chairman's screen and on all the buzzers.

If a game is interrupted, it can be resumed later just by reloading the buzzers and the chairman app.

By selecting options/preferences, it is possible to control the various sounds created by the app.

During a pause in the game, you may wish to select options/statistics in order to see who has been talking and for how long - and other quite interesting statistical facts about the game.

During play, the chairman’s screen always displays the list of players in score order, with the highest score at the top. This order might change when points are added, so when giving extra points manually, care must be taken to avoid accidentally giving points to the wrong player.

The app knows when the next round will be the last round, of course. A established tradition at BBC recordings is a loud groan of disappointment from the audience at the news that the next round is to be the last round – and the app can do this too! ... Unless it’s turned off in options/preferences.

Single device mode

This mode allows up to four players – because iPads have four corners! The buzzers appear as triangles on the corners of the iPad. Bluetooth is not used for this mode. Sitting closely around the iPad is a good idea when playing this way, because each player needs to be able to touch his corner buzzer. Someone else should be Chairman, and able to touch the clock in order to start it.

This single device implementation can also be played with fewer than four players, in which case only the active buzzers appear.

Except for the absence of remotely connected buzzers, this mode is played just as the Bluetooth mode described above.

In App Purchases

Quite a lot of games arrive free with the free download. After playing these, you might want to acquire more as "in app purchases". There are several ways to do this:

You can buy collections of games as played at real BBC recordings. Many of these games are also available on CD so you can hear how the professionals did with those very same subjects!

And you can buy the user definable subjects feature. This allows you to create your own collections of subjects – about anything you choose!

And we plan to add soon the share user definable subjects feature. This will allow you to share your subject collections with other enthusiasts, and to download those that they have chosen to share.


The ticking of the watch is a recording of the original watch, which belonged to Ian Messiter. It was used on all the BBC Radio broadcasts back in 1967 - and for many years after that. The same is true of the whistle that sounds at the end of each minute. It’s the very same whistle that Ian Messiter used to blow, recorded here especially for this app.

Just a Minute has been on the air in England (broadcast by the BBC) ever since 1967 – probably because it’s very popular!