At the recent TelcoTV 2009 event in Orlando, set-top box vendors provided their take on STBs with hybrid video support in mind, and while they hope to move those STBs in high volume into the U.S. market, it was also clear that many of them have their hopes set on a looming opportunity in the U.K.--Project Canvas. It was additionally clear these vendors were making concerted efforts to take costs out of the STBs to meet low-cost aims set forth by Canvas.
Meanwhile, the hybrid video effort steered by the BBC, and including partners such as U.K. telco BT and others, has been waiting... and waiting... for a review from the BBC Trust. Some observers had thought that the approval would come during November. The BBC is still hoping to hear from the Trust before the end of this year, but if it doesn't, it is looking more likely that Canvas may not launch within the 2010 calendar.
Satellite TV giant BSkyB is still fighting to have the BBC Trust block the Canvas effort. The BBC recently made concessions in the Canvas model that would allow other non-public broadcasters to participate, which would seem to relieve some of the anti-competitive concerns, but BSkyB said this is nothing more than "lip-service," according to a report in the Guardian. If the project remains in limbo, hopeful vendors may have to work harder on other market fronts to make up for the absence of Canvas.
- The Guardian has this story
Screen Digest last month issued a positive outlook for Canvas
BSkyB has consistently opposed Canvas