YouView brings a whole new meaning to catch-up TV!

Following their, sort of, launch today there is on YouView’s  rather flashy website a little app that lets you know whether your broadband and digital channel reception are “set up” to receive it!

With admirable honesty they say that  “Slower broadband speeds could mean that whilst you will still be able to use some of YouView’s features, ……  some features won’t work at all ….”

The “sort of” launch took place this morning at the London Film Museum and was, according to most commentators,  around two years late.

Previously billed as “The next generation of Freeview” our “sort of” launch statement follows on from their front page description that it “will be available from high street retailers in the next few weeks and from broadband providers in the coming months.”

The set top box at £299 is likely available towards the end of the month from the likes of amazon Argos and John Lewis. The box is made by Humax (who already figure on amazon on a YouView search which picks up a Freeview Digital Recorder)! It appears both from their site information and a BBC technology piece (scroll to the last section – Technical Limitations) that the initial box does not have wifi so more wires needed!

In spite of YouView’s claim that one can “Get YouView as part of a phone and broadband package from BT or TalkTalk and access lots of extra programmes and films. Please see BT and TalkTalk’s websites for more information on YouView packages”,  a perfunctory look around the BT and TalkTalk sites didn’t retrieve any details on their likely offerings. TalkTalk are reported to be outlining their strategy on 26 July!

Lord Alan Sugar is the Non-executive Chairman of YouView.

In an increasingly crowded marketplace we’re not currently convinced that it can become a significant market player even with the rumoured content additions.

So rather than:

  • Can I get YouView?

the more relevant question is:

  • Why should I get YouView?

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