BBC iPlayer comes to Windows Phone, not quite an app

iPlayer is coming to Windows Phone, but with a special live tile rather than a full-blown app.

Do you want the short version or the long version? Short version: iPlayer is coming to Windows Phone.

Still here? Then here's the long version. The BBC today announced that Windows Phone would join iOS, Android and BlackBerry as the latest mobile operating system to support iPlayer, via a dedicated live tile.

That means you'll soon be able to watch catch-up and on-demand TV shows and films from Auntie Beeb on your Windows Phone phone, whether it's running Windows Phone 7.5 software -- like the Nokia Lumia 800 -- or Windows Phone 8 -- like the Nokia Lumia 920 and HTC 8S.

It's not technically an app, but a shortcut that gets its own coloured square, or live tile, leading directly to the iPlayer online player. The launch date is yet to be confirmed. 

iPlayer is already available on iOS, Android and even Blackberry, but they've historically given Windows Phone the cold shoulder, with the Beeb repeatedly denying Microsoft's OS the privilege. 

It seems that the BBC has had a change of heart however, with iPlayer joining big names like Spotify, Twitter and WhatsApp in entering the Windows Phone world. Windows is still lagging a long way behind established app stores like Android's Google Play and Apple's App Store though.

Meanwhile Auntie's online player goes from strength to strength as it continues to expand to new platforms. Last year more than 2.5 million people per month watched or listened online by one device or another.

Is iPlayer enough to tempt to you to Windows Phone, or are there are still not enough big apps? Tell me your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.

Additional reporting by Jordan O'Brien.

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