The BBC’s director of new media and technology Erik Huggers says that the future for free-to-air digital platforms like Freesat and Freeview is ‘unclear’ â€“ suggesting that only IPTV and Project Canvas venture will give consumers the services and features that they need.
Huggers said that, despite work on adding HD to Freeview and continued support to Freesat, Project Canvas was the only way in which free to air viewers could keep up with the level of Pay TV innovation. “If you look at free-to-air platforms there is not a clear future for them,” said Huggers. “Obviously the BBC and partners are working together on two of these platforms and we’re upgrading Freeview to HD and adding loads of functionality and services, but innovation in Pay TV is much faster and we think it’s important for subscribers to have an option which is subscription free and has the same sort of features and functionality.”
The BBC is hoping that Canvas can provide a valid subscription free television service for the new era of Internet connected viewing.