YouView 'could slip' beyond first half of 2011

Chairman still coy on box costs

YouView chairman Kip Meeks has admitted that the first set boxes may not actually appear in the first half of 2011.

The arrival of the BBC-backed IPTV proposition is beginning to stir the public interest, with YouView still hoping to arrive in the homes in the first half of next year.

Speaking at a Broadcasting Press Guild event, Meeks confessed that technology projects were never guaranteed to hit their projected start dates, and that YouView was no different.

No targets

"We haven't announced any targets yet," said Meeks.

"I didn't announce a launch date. The line from the venture has been the first half of next year, but it may slip, it's a technology project."

The cost of the box has also been the subject of much discussion – with the likes of Sky already insisting that it will be 'premium' proposition and therefore a long way from the cheap Freeview boxes that have aided that platform's stellar growth.

Projected price point

Meeks admits that cost is a key factor, but is not yet able to talk about the projected price point of the first YouView boxes.

"We are not controlling the cost [of the box] but we are very anxious to make that cost as low as possible," he added.

"We don't know [a ball-park figure] because those are decisions we are not in control of.

"We are very interested in them and there are figures floating around but it would infuriate the set top box manufacturers for me to give them out and infuriate [YouView partners] BT and TalkTalk."

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