Movistar, the Spanish arm of Telefonica, announced a deal with Microsoft which will enable customers to pay for Windows Phone apps via the phone bill or prepaid credit.

In a statement, the operator said that this will reduce the number of steps needed to make a purchase, and provides an alternative for customers who do not have a credit card or other means of payment, or who are reluctant to provide data.

For security, customers can set a PIN which is needed before purchase, and apps are also associated with the Windows Live ID of the user.

Twelve months ago, Telefonica Digital announced it would be offering operator billing support for Google Play, BlackBerry App World, and the Windows Phone store, with plans to roll this out across 14 markets “by year end”.

The Spanish unit subsequently added support for BlackBerry App World billing in September 2012.

Microsoft previously said that an app developer earns three times more per active user on a paid app published in an operator-billing enabled market than a credit card-only one.