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Project Canvas Gains Wide Manufacturer Support, Releases Specs, Attracts Objections

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Project Canvas has said that forty different organisations have announced that they will produce equipment supporting the much anticipated IP TV standard.

In a statement, Project Canvas said that it had invited the industry to offer support for the IPTV platform and had received a positive response from a range of consumer electronic device manufactures, including those producing set-top boxes, internet -enabled TVs and recorders.

“The response from industry has been phenomenal, and we’re really excited by the strong desire to work with Project Canvas to bring internet-enabled set-top-boxes and TVs into people’s homes next year”, said Richard Halton, director of Project Canvas in a statement. "For us, this is a great endorsement of our open approach to working with industry partners."
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A first draft of the technical specifications of the platform have also been released, and reveal that the system will report back viewing figures and will offer ‘web apps’, though as reported by PaidContent, it is not clear exactly what these will be or how they will work. It will support HTML4 and a subset of HTML5, while Flash Player 10 support is currently up in the air.

Project Canvas is a collaboration between the BBC, Arqiva, BT and TalkTalk and hopes to make a open, IPTV based standard for delivering terrestrial broadcasters’ content from the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, and Five. Effectively, it's a BBC iPlayer style version of Freeview.

However, United for Local Television, an association of local TV operators, has lodged a complaint with Ofcom over Project Canvas, claiming in a statement that the project, “risks seriously damaging the development of small-scale TV services in the U.K."

This follows similar complaints from UK TV group Six TV, and the rather better known Virgin Media. Sky has yet to lodge a complaint but analysts suggest that it is just a matter of time before it does.

Link: Project Canvas.

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