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YouView opens applications for public trials

Catch up TV service being tested throughout UK

YouView opens trials

YouView finally appears to be getting ready to launch

Digital TV service YouView has started beta trials in the UK as it finally approaches a launch date.

YouView is a subscription-free service which aims to provide access to digital TV services as well as catch-up TV through internet services such as the BBC iPlayer, ITV Player, 4oD, Demand Five and SeeSaw. For more information read our guide to YouView.

The trials will involve 2,000 users throughout the UK and are open to anyone with a compatible TV (a widescreen model with an available scart socket) and a broadband connection.You can sign up to be part of the trial at YouView.com.

What is YouView?

YouView is a joint project that aims to bring digital TV and catch-up services to TVs connected to the internet without the need for a subscription service such as Virgin Media.

The service was initially meant to launch in 2010 and has since suffered many delays with the latest suggested launch date being before the Olympic games.

YouView timeline

  • February 2009 – BBC launch public consultation on Project Canvas, the working title for what would become YouView
  • May 2010 – Following concerns raised by commercial operator, BSkyB, clearance is granted by the Office of Fair Trading
  • December 2009 – Channel 4 and Talk Talk join project as partners
  • September 2010 – Project Canvas rebrands as YouView
  • January 2011 – Delayed until 2012 due to technical problems with set-top box
  • March 2011 – 29 content providers join the project including BSkyB, Film4oD and Lovefilm.
  • April 2011 – Set top box specifications announced
  • May 2012 – YouView claim it will launch before the Olympic Games
  • May 2012 – First trials begin in UK
  • June 2012 – YouView opens beta trials

Which? will test the first YouView set-top box as soon as it’s available in the UK. To see what it’s competing against, visit our PVR reviews and set-top box reviews .

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