The BBC has made the iPlayer service compatible with Windows Phone 8 devices, giving users of the Microsoft mobile platform easy access to their favourite BBC content on the move.
The app is not an application in the standard sense, instead it is a shortcut to the mobile optimised iPlayer website, with a Live Tile.
The BBC are keen to give easy access to programmes via mobile, as requests from smartphones and Tablet devices is on the rise. In March this year the Beeb recorded more than 30% of all requests for iPlayer content from mobile devices, totalling more than 81 million requests.
With the iPlayer service, Windows Phone 8 users can now access content via 3G and WiFi, with easy access to programmes that have been marked as favourites.
TV Shows and documentaries can be browsed via genre, category, most popular and schedule, as well as listen to BBC radio stations in the background whilst using the handset for other activities. Offline playback is not currently available, due to the limitations of the initial service, but hopefully that kind of feature can be added to a future, more fully enhanced mobile app.
Unfortunately the iPlayer service won't be rolled out to users of smartphones running Windows Phone 7.5. In testing, it was found that those devices were incapable of providing the same quality of playback as Windows Phone 8 devices, so the iPlayer is only available for that platform.
The iPlayer app is available to download now, for free, from the Windows Marketplace.