BT Vision has announed its plans for a massive IPTV launch, set to hit the UK in 2010. Codenamed Project Canvas, the service will bring together major UK broadcasters in one location to provide on-demand content. And what's more, it's going to be free.
BBC and ITV are already on board, although more are expected to partner up before the launch in 18 months' time. CEO of BT Vision Dan Marks explained the project to us as "othe most important development that this country has seen in IPTV".
Given that Project Kangaroo, the joint venture between the Beeb, ITV and 4oD has faltered due to an investigation by the Competition Commission, it looks as if BT might have taken the lead in providing a one-stop shop for quality IPTV programming.
The service will launch in conjunction with BT Broadband at first, although Marks was keen to stress that the service will be available to any ISP that fulfills the technical criteria.
Project canvas will deliver televisual goodies drawing from iPlayer and ITV Player content, using streaming MP4, and we're promised "a satisfying programme lineup" from a range other providers, as well as HD content at launch "most probably from the BBC HD channels".
We're promised a full demo when it's ready, so stay tuned.