YouView shareholders including the BBC have announced that they will back the smart TV platform for the next five years.
Despite speculation that the BBC and other broadcasters might reduce funding or pull out altogether, all seven of YouView’s shareholders – the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel Five, BT, TalkTalk and Arqiva – plan to stick with YouView.
All shareholders will remain equal partners, but YouView hasn’t revealed how much each shareholder is spending.
Richard Halton, CEO, YouView said, “We are delighted that all seven shareholders have committed to the future of YouView with a 5 year term. We have achieved a significant milestone with well over 1 million homes regularly using the service and high levels of usage and satisfaction as key indicators of success for the future.”
After what seemed like an ice age, YouView finally emerged in 2012. Since then, over 1 million UK customers have signed up for YouView boxes. Over half a million customers watch four half hour on-demand programmes each week.
While there are over a million YouView boxes warming British living rooms, the great majority of these are TalkTalk TV boxes, given away free with the Plus TV broadband bundle. This prompted concerns that the BBC was spending licence fee money propping up the commercial ambitions of a private ISP, fuelling rumours that the BBC planned to reduce funding.
Halton said that future plans for YouView include the launch of more content partnerships, app updates and an ambition to get YouView in 10 million UK homes. Freeview is available in over 11 million homes while Sky currently has 10 million TV subscribers.