SeeSaw, the online video-on-demand portal, is shutting down next month, 16 months after launching in the UK.
The news was relayed on SeeSaw’s official blog this morning and the shut down comes as a result of parent company Arqiva deciding to pull support for the platform. “As part of an ongoing strategic review of its business activities Arqiva, our parent company, is no longer able to support the service.” An Arqiva statement added: “SeeSaw is an excellent service and has provided invaluable insight into the online TV market in the UK. But it no longer fits with the strategic direction in which we are taking Arqiva and requires considerable investment to succeed in an increasingly competitive market.” Arqiva is one of the partners in the stalled YouView project and it may have taken this step to focus its energies into this project.
However it appears as if Arqiva did attempt to save the platform by seeking outside investment: "We have tried to find an investment partner, however this has not proved possible. We have therefore put SeeSaw staff on a 30-day consultation as we need to reach a conclusion by the end of our financial year on 30 June." SeeSaw offers 3,500 hours of ‘free’ TV - albeit ad-supported – from BBC, Channel 4 and Five. It also offers Premium TV whereby viewers can rent TV shows from around 99p per episode. In December, SeeSaw attempted to grow its audience by offering ad-free viewing for just 1p per month and a feature called Ad Selector which lets you choose which ads you want.
SeeSaw thanked everyone for their support since launch and supportive comments on the blog post came from fans sad to see the service coming to an end. Hopefully we will get to see YouView coming our way sooner rather than later now that Lord Sugar is cracking the whip.
Source: SeeSaw Blog