Virgin Media has announced the BBC iPlayer will be available via its EPG sooner than expected.

The iPlayer will be available as a dedicated section on Virgin Media's Catch up TV service on its EPG, as well as through the red button, from next week.

Virgin Media's 3.5 million TV customers are the first in the UK to get BBC iPlayer on a TV platform and are able to watch full screen pictures at full quality on their television set without the need for downloading.

Malcolm Wall, CEO of content at Virgin Media, said: "Virgin Media customers have demonstrated a real appetite for on-demand content and we've been delighted by the response to the launch of BBC iPlayer on our TV platform. As BBC iPlayer becomes available through Virgin Media's EPG, we expect interest in and usage of our on-demand service to continue to grow strongly".

BBC iPlayer allows viewers to catch-up on over 350 hours of BBC programmes from the past 7 days.