The wait's over: YouView finally launches in the U.K.

If timing is everything, YouView--the collaboration between BT (NYSE: BT), TalkTalk (LSE: TALK), the BBC, ITV and Channel 4--has some really interesting clockwork. For the last two years the service has been on-again/off-again as technology bugs and other matters delayed launch.

Now, a week after Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) entered the U.K. market and only scant weeks before the Olympics take over London, the Internet streaming service has finally launched.

Even then, it's questionable how much value the service will be to those who want a more interactive Olympics experience. While getting YouView is fairly simple technologically--all a user needs are a television aerial, a TalkTalk broadband connection and a YouView box, says TalkTalk--those boxes won't be available from retailers until the end of July (just in time, or perhaps after, the Olympics).

They'll also be pricey. A PC Pro story says that the initial price of the hardware will be £299 ($463.69). This compares with both the BBC's free iPlayer and Google TV, which cost £100 less. To offset the difference, BT and TalkTalk are expected to offer the service and hardware "at significant discounts" for consumers who sign up for phone and broadband packages--bundles if you will.

TalkTalk told the publication that it would outline its plans and prices later in the month (again, timing is everything) but that the service was "already being tested in hundreds of homes."

For more:
 - read the PC Pro story

Related articles:
YouView on again with 'launch event' set for next week
YouView IPTV service won't launch in time for Olympics, BBC director-general says
Look out world, here comes Google TV!

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