YouView has officially been delayed until 2012, at least. The question is whether this is the final nail in the coffin of the BBC-backed connected device or whether it still stands a chance of succeeding.
YouView began life as Project Canvas, which emerged from the ashes of Project Kangaroo. YouView evolved into a connected-TV platform from partners such as the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, TalkTalk, BT, and Arqiva.
YouView will be a platform which combines the existing Freeview with a host of catchup and TV on-demand features. In other words, it’ll be a catch-all providing both new and old programming and a lot more besides.
That is if it ever actually makes an appearance.
Delayed To 2012
It was rumored in January that YouView had been delayed until 2012, and that was confirmed this week. The reasons for the delay are cited as “technical problems and rumored discord between the partners”.
That is the one problem with having so many partners involved. Everyone has to agree on the specs before production can move forward, and it takes time to continually debate the best way to proceed.
The timescale for release now on the table is “a product in trial by the end of this year, with a full consumer launch planned in early 2012.” The BBC and its partners are clearly trying to get the product right before launching it, but there’s a risk involved in delaying it by this length of time.
Dead Or Wounded?
The question now is whether this delay until 2012 (or longer) will kill YouView stone dead. The fear is that with technology continually moving forward at a fast pace (particularly in this sector) that YouView could be obsolete by the time it actually launches.
However, an opposing viewpoint is that connected TV platforms will be much more mainstream by the time YouView launches, giving it an incredible opportunity to be the product of choice for those who want a brand and a device they can trust. The BBC name still holds some weight, after all.
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