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News: Wot No Iplayer For Windows Phone?

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The BBC has been keen to be seen as platform agnostic in the tech wars, and so it was surprising that they'd never released a version of iPlayer for Windows Phone.

Now we know why.The Head of BBC's iPlayer responded to a query as to why there was no support with the following:

"Hi [Redacted]

Thanks for your mail. I'm adding [Redacted] -- who is the Head of iPlayer on my team -- in case he has anything to add.

There are two ways we can go about bringing iPlayer to Windows Phone:

1. We can build a full app -- the kind you get in the Marketplace. This is completely bespoke to Windows Phone 7, and is the costliest option because Windows Phone uses technologies unlike those used on any other platform. While Android and Apple also use their own app technologies, the TV and radio programmes themselves can be created once and used across both, so much of the investment is reusable. Sadly this is not the case for Windows Phone. Unfortunately Microsoft have also announced that Windows Phone 8 apps will be different yet again, so any Windows Phone 7 app we make would have to be rebuilt from the ground up for the next version of Windows Phone.

2. We can encourage Windows Phone users to access our mobile web site by from their phones. Unfortunately today there's a bug in Windows Phone that prevents our standards-based media from being played on those devices. Microsoft has been aware of the bug for over a year now, and we're hopeful they'll address it (on Windows Phone 7 as well as Windows Phone 8) so our Windows Phone audiences can access iPlayer.

As you can see, there's no easy answer. I'm optimistic that one or both of the options above will become possible in Windows Phone 8, but that's little help to people like you who are using Windows Phone 7. Nonetheless, hopefully this additional detail helps you understand our thought process.

Thanks again for reaching out.

Daniel Danker

General Manager

Programmes & On Demand


It looks like someone in Microsoft hasn't heard that this is a big deal. The only hope is that Windows Phone 8 changes things.

Click here to view the article

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