The BBC has struck a deal with Microsoft to bring a version of its iPlayer catch-up service to Windows Phone.

It says the BBC iPlayer will work on Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8 handsets through a shortcut application that will be available "soon" on Windows Phone Store. The shortcut will enable the BBC iPlayer website to work via a live tile.

It's not ideal, considering there has been a dedicated application for iOS since 2011, but Android owners don't even get the full feature set at present - no offline viewing through downloads yet - so the Windows Phone crowd are in good company.

As with Android, the BBC advises that the mobile iPlayer website needs its dedicated Media Player software to run successfully. But the Windows Phone shortcut will wrap both together, it says.

The Beeb says that once the Windows Phone app launches more than 650 different device types will b able to access its iPlayer service.