Missing the Olympics 'no biggie,' says YouView board member
26th Jun 2012 | 20:10
BT Vision chief says company in it for the long game
Failing to launch in time for the London Olympic Games is 'not a big deal' according to YouView board member, Marc Watson.
The BT Vision chief executive says the various broadcasters and broadband partners involved are looking to the long-term rather than rushing out the tech, which was scheduled to launch two years ago.
The long-delayed project involves the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5, TalkTalk, BT and Arqiva and will eventually bring catch-up facilities for all terrestrial channels to a new breed of connected set-top boxes.
The most recent target set by the group - which recently acquired the services of Lord Sugar to hasten the launch - was to have set-top boxes in living rooms before the games' opening ceremony kicked-off.
Watson told the Telegraph: "From our perspective missing the Olympics is no big deal. We take a really long term view of YouView. This is a platform for the future – we do want to build it out to millions of people and we'll take several years doing that.
"It's much more important to get the product right than rush it out to market – people are not going to remember whether we missed the Olympics or not."
Besieged by problems
After a host of technical problems, false starts and rebranding efforts, the BBC's director general Mark Thompson last week announced that the boxes would not go on sale in time for the showpiece event.
Thompson asserted that he wanted users to have the same seamless experience enjoyed by early iPlayer adopters, rather a public launch besieged by technical difficulties.
However, it seems like a huge missed opportunity to get people on board with the product as London 2012 Olympics excitement reaches a crescendo.
It now seems likely that the autumn will be in full swing by the time the £200 set-top boxes are available to buy. We hope.