YouView catch-up TV finally launches

YouView, the long-awaited catch-up TV service backed by broadcasters including the BBC, ITV and Channel 4, has finally launched after four years in development with broadcasters.

youview

The service offers more than 100 digital TV and radio stations, seven-day catch up on-demand and a library of catch-up programmes from major broadcasters including the BBC, ITV, and Channel 4.

The set-top box’s built in programme guide allows users to scroll back through the past seven days’ shows and watch content on demand. Programmes can also be searched for by programme or actor.

Viewers can also pause, rewind and record live TV.

The internet-connected set-top box will be available with no subscription at UK retailers including John Lewis, Currys, Comet, Argos and Amazon in July, priced at £299. It will also be available as part of a phone and broadband package from internet service providers BT and TalkTalk, who will also offer additional content and services.

The venture’s chairman, Lord Sugar, described the launch as “a great moment in British television”.

The launch has been delayed by a series of setbacks including technology issues and management changes.

It will have to compete with existing on-demand and catch up services from Sky and TiVo as well as internet connected TV services and games consoles such as PS3 and Xbox that offer consumers access to content.

Lord Sugar adds: “Our intention with this simple-to-use box is to provide extraordinary TV for everyone, with on-demand services combined with TV channels with an opportunity to search back an entire week to catch what they’ve missed. It’s a whole new way of experiencing TV.”

YouView hopes to attract further partners to add further content to the service.

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