Project Canvas has been officially named YouView, with new CEO Richard Halton hailing the BBC backed IPTV scheme as likely to "change the way we watch television forever."

The YouView name has been touted for some time – with obvious parallels with YouTube and Freeview.

Halton, who has headed up Project Canvas, was confirmed as CEO of the new YouView service, which is expected to begin hitting UK living rooms in early 2011.

Controversy

YouView has seven partners, Arqiva, BT, ITV, Channel Four, Channel Five, Talk Talk and BBC – with the BBC Trust's decision to rubber stamp the project still mired in controversy.

The likes of Sky and Virgin Media, along with major manufacturers like Sony, have made it perfectly clear that they do not agree with the BBC's involvement in the platform.

But, the public are sure to be excited by what many are touting as the next generation of Freeview and Freesat.

Subscription free

"YouView is a brilliant new subscription-free TV service which combines the best TV with on demand services and internet content," said Halton.

"I am delighted to be leading the team who will make it a reality and think it will change the way we watch TV forever.

"We are creating an exciting consumer brand which will stand for a better TV experience for UK homes. Connected TV creates all kinds of creative possibilities, for existing networks as well as local services and new developers of interactive applications.

"It all adds up to great news for TV audiences. I look forward to working closely with the creative and developer communities to open up exciting possibilities for viewers to discover and enjoy content in new ways."

A website has been set up at www.youview.com, which describes the new IPTV service, which will offer catch up TV, interactivity, apps and, potentially, commercial on-demand offerings.