The BBC has launched a service that allows UK viewers to watch live TV programs from suitable Wi-Fi connected mobile phones.

BBC Live TV is available in a beta test form, offering a limited number of the broadcaster’s channels, plus its radio stations.

Some smartphones already support use of the BBC iPlayer catch-up TV service over a Wi-Fi connection, but this is the first time the corporation has offered live streaming of programmes to mobile phones

The service currently only works over a Wi-Fi connection and broadcasts a 176 x144 image, but the broadcaster hopes to extend Live TV out to 3G networks and to add more channels during the coming months.

Live TV is thought to work with a selection of smartphones, including the Android G1 and Nokia N Series devices. It is also supposed to work with Apple iPhone soon.

There is no need to install any applications in order to watch the channels.

The service is only available to UK audiences and requires viewers to hold a current television licence.

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