SCREEN DIGEST FUTURE OF MEDIA DISTRIBUTION – LONDON. YouView CTO Anthony Rose has been giving details of future products to support the hybrid broadcast platform.
Speaking at the Screen Digest media distribution conference, Rose said that IDTVs were on the roadmap, but unlikely to appear until 2012, when they would be included on the calendars of the display manufacturers. Their planning, said Rose, was different to set-top box developers that tended to release products as and when they were ready.
“In the future there might be versions that are IP only or they might have a flash drive or no hard drive at all,” said Rose. A DTT/Freeview PVR will be the first YouView product release and the first such units are expected to be made available by manufacturers during 2011. Rose added that the next generation of TV sets were likely to include their own hard drive.
In an attempt to dispel some of the myths that had grown up around YouView, which he insisted was more than a BBC project, Rose said there were three layers to the technology.
The first, he said, was completely open standard, written in C++ code, and available on the organisation’s website. The second layer was a client UI that was deployed across all of the boxes. The third piece was the backend metadata. “When you compare this with HBB only the bottom layer is analogous and HBB is missing the search facility that is capable across all devices.”
Explaining the YouView app store, Rose likened the process to the MOT, the annual official test performed on behalf of the UK authorities, to ensure a car is roadworthy. YouView would ensure any app was safe, and met public decency tests, etc. Asked if he would be prepared to countenance a Google app store within the Canvas environment, Rose said he would accept it, providing it passed the MOT.