On Demand TV Service Seesaw To Compete With MSN Player, Project Canvas

A new online television service, Seesaw, has been soft-launched yesterday and goes live today; it aims at bringing together material from the main terrestrial channels, namely BBC, Channel 4 and Five.

The three are, ironically, partners in the other video on demand service, Project Canvas. Seesaw contains more than 3000 hours worth of content and includes the likes of the Apprentice, Shameless and Australian favourites, Neighbours.

Interestingly, Seesaw possibly shares some common DNA with Project Canvas as it is none other than the discarded Project Kangaroo which was blocked by the Competition and later sold to Arqiva for £8 million last year.

Supported by a minute pre-roll and post-roll advertising, Seesaw is currently free but there are plans to bring a paid option in the future; furthermore, Arqiva has confirmed, that like its audio alter ego, Spotify, it will be paying a fee each time a stream is played .

The Telegraph also reports that around 20,000 users have tried the service since it went in beta last month.

SeeSaw's head honcho John Keeling said in a statement that "It's like having an enormous buffet... you can either just snack on it and catch up on what you've missed or gorge yourself with an entire season - it's absolutely at your fingertips and your control."

Some, however, are cautious about the glut of IPTV offers currently on the market.

With US giant Hulu just around the corner, the UK market could well turn into an overcrowded field with iPlayer, Sky Player, Virgin On Demand, ITV Player, 4OD, Five OD, MSN Player, Canvas and Youtube competing for the eyeballs.

Our Comments

BBC, Channel 4 and ITV were the main backers of Kangaroo and one can argue whether Seesaw is not just another project Kangaroo except that it is outsourced to a third party. Surprisingly, ITV has not yet agreed to participate in Seesaw although some of its content will be on there thanks to a third party.

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