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YouView rapped for claiming it’s a ‘unique’ and the ‘easiest’ catch-up TV service

YouView can’t claim to be either unique or the easiest way to watch catch-up TV after Sky and Virgin moaned to watchdogs about its advertising.

Virgin complained that a YouView’s launch ad in 2012 said its backwards-scrolling programme guide was ‘unique’, when Virgin’s TiVo had featured a similar interface since 2010.

YouView’s claims that it is the ‘easiest’ catch-up TV service also raised Virgin’s hackles, and the Advertising Standards Authority upheld both complaints.

YouView rapped for claiming it’s a ‘unique’ and ‘easiest’ catch-up TV service
YouView’s launch ads made some exaggerated claims

Read more about YouViewIt wasn’t all bad news for YouView: the ASA denied a third Virgin complaint that the need for broadband implied that YouView can’t be ‘subscription-free’, and complaints from Virgin and Sky that the availability of HD channels was exaggerated in the ads.

YouView said: “We are delighted with the feedback from the ASA as YouView is now proven to be a subscription-free TV service with over 70 digital channels including HD. 

“Feedback about the service has been very positive and 8 out of 10 users stated that watching catch up on YouView was easier than any other TV service they had used.”

The ASA said YouView must provide ‘adequate evidence to substantiate comparative claims and to ensure their claims were not misleading’.

YouView’s pre-launch research tripped up when it asked users whether they found it easy to use, but didn’t have definitive evidence it was easier to use than TiVo – a slim margin of 52 per cent of former TiVo users preferred YouView’s backwards EPG.

The advertising which attracted complaints ran on TV, in the Radio Times and the Daily Telegraph, and as a poster. YouView said the ‘unique’ claim ran only once, and the other ads will return with the ‘easiest’ claim removed.

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