In case you have not heard of YouView, in brief, the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Five as well as internet service providers BT and TalkTalk and transmission company and SeeSaw owner Arqiva have teamed together to create a new offering. It will allows those with terrestrial TV and broadband to save/record programmes on to a top-box much like Sky Plus and Virgin Media allows you to. The box will act as a storage facility which you will be able to access in order to watch programmes at a later date. Despite YouView offering a similar service to Sky Plus and Virgin Media, the part that is different is that, YouView will only ask for a one-off payment for the top-box leaving customers contract free yet able to watch TV on demand to their heart’s content!

There has been considerable opposition from the likes of Sky and Virgin Media as they feel that YouView’s arrival sparks trouble, claiming it will breach the Competition Act 1998. Ofcom have actually overruled this at present saying that it’s too early to determine if their entry to the market will harm competition and that they need to see how this new addition will act over the issue of access to content etc.

The YouView chief exec, Richard Halton, said, “We have been clear throughout this process that YouView will stimulate competition in the TV platform market and create opportunities for content providers and device manufacturers.”

We think that consumers would agree yet for the likes of Sky and Virgin it is going to mean a lot more hard work which we’re sure is not desirable.

The plan is to launch some products next year so we can all see how this one pans out then.


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