YouView expands on EPG plans

Just weeks away from its mooted launch, YouView has run a new consultation on its EPG and Search policy, with plans to consult further on both Apps and the allocation of IP channels.

The new document, published on the hybrid broadband provider’s website, follows last September’s draft User Interface and Search Policy.

Clarifications have been made in areas surrounding the search methodology, the genre structure and navigation; and the population of partially filled UI pages.

YouView stresses that with the service yet to launch it is “not possible to provide absolute certainty about all elements of the service.”

According to YouView, one area of confusion has been the previous section referred to “Expectation based on existing TV VOD services”. This has been altered so that it refers only to those ISPs that are affiliated to YouView by being a part of its YouView Affiliate ISP agreement.

In itself the statement provides clarity that ISPs will use the YouView platform as the means to deliver content exclusively to their subscribers.

“We consider that this revised Factor would be consistent with our core principle of viewer expectation and convenience: these ISPs’ “vertical” customers would expect to see any on demand content service provided by their ISP displayed reasonably prominently in the YouView UI.”

The company said that there is a basis of expectation for customers to be able to access content from their ISP and that it should hold a degree of prominence.

YouView holds BT and TalkTalk among its shareholders, but was established by the public service broadcasters, led by the BBC. What is emerging is a different animal to the DTT platform Freeview.

No firm date has been given for the launch of YouView, though with small-scale trials underway, there had been some expectation that this might take place during May. nevertheless analysts have recently expressed concern that the launch might not take place before the London 2012 Olympics.