In-depth interview with YouView CEO Richard Halton

JoeJoe Posts: 1,950Member ✭✭✭
Lots of talk about upcoming Youview Alexa voice control and other parts of the YouView pie: 

http://uk.pcmag.com/youview/92994/feature/youview-ceo-richard-halton-on-how-the-cloud-and-alexa-will-c

Comments

  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,297Member ✭✭✭
    Big Brother wants to listen to your children in your home.

    Umm.....
    ‘Does television exist for us to watch, or do we exist to watch television?’ - Noah Hawley
  • If there's no Google Assistant integration I might as well leave now.
  • VisionmanVisionman Posts: 8,918Member ✭✭✭
    How can you leave something that hasn't arrived yet?
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,297Member ✭✭✭
    Visionman said:
    How can you leave something that hasn't arrived yet?
    ITHM YouView.

    No doubt he will be moving to one of the many comparable platforms that does, or will, support Google Assistant  :p
    ‘Does television exist for us to watch, or do we exist to watch television?’ - Noah Hawley
  • VisionmanVisionman Posts: 8,918Member ✭✭✭
    Well you should know....
  • VisionmanVisionman Posts: 8,918Member ✭✭✭
    Have you read that article in post 1? Or the second article in post 1?

    YouView gets 350 million hits (interactions) per day.
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,297Member ✭✭✭
    Visionman said:
    Have you read that article in post 1? Or the second article in post 1?

    YouView gets 350 million hits (interactions) per day.
    With 3 million devices out there (allegedly) that’s 117 hits per device per day.

    Even more per device/day if many of those boxes have been slung unused at the back of a cupboard for any reason...
    ‘Does television exist for us to watch, or do we exist to watch television?’ - Noah Hawley
  • VisionmanVisionman Posts: 8,918Member ✭✭✭
    ACTIVE  boxes, Roy. Ta
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,297Member ✭✭✭
    edited 25 February 2018, 9:47AM
    While Richard Halton is blue-sky (small ‘s’ please, Autocorrect!) thinking about how YouView boxes could be smarter, I would like mine to detect when the BBC are doing that annoying ‘BBC HD cannot yet show...’ when a regional programme is on, and switch to SD until the next Present/Following event.

    The BBC, according to feedback on yesterday’s BBC NewsWatch programme, would have to spend about a third of their regional programmes budget to support HD on regional, so it may not happen anytime soon. And they don’t seem to have heard of upscaling  :/

    Certainly for us, our low takeup of BBC1 HD is because of this issue during National/regional news, and a smarter YouView could resolve it for us, if we could just put the box on BBC1 HD, and have it autoswitch for regional SD.
    ‘Does television exist for us to watch, or do we exist to watch television?’ - Noah Hawley
  • AnaglyptaAnaglypta Posts: 738Member ✭✭✭
    edited 25 February 2018, 12:02PM
    Fear not @Roy with the launch of HbbTV on BBC they are progressing nicely towards integrated IP delivered content, and are currently showing demonstrations of how this can be used to insert a regional segment into a live linear news broadcast.

    You might want to look at this BBC R&D Blog article.

    John.
    "Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity." - George S. Patton
  • VisionmanVisionman Posts: 8,918Member ✭✭✭
    But BBC Regional News isn't broadcast on an HD channel. So one wouldn't set an HD channel to record it? In fairness thats nothing to do with any particular box or platform.
  • Peskdale61Peskdale61 Posts: 76Member
    edited 25 February 2018, 12:16PM
    @Roy - Whether the regional news itself is HD or not isn't the problem. The expense come from creating, maintaining and distributing the 20 regional variations of the HD channel required to bring even upscaled content to the correct viewers.

    To be able to even show upscaled regional news they have to:
    1) Upgrade all the video routing equipment in all of the regions so that they can actually send and return HD signals from/to presentation.
    2) Get a ridiculous amount of satellite capacity in order to broadcast all of the regional versions of the channel.

    Issue 1 is a bigger problem than most realise - opt-outs for local news are done in the regions themselves, so they have to be able to take the HD feed from London presentation. Most regions will still be using SD-SDI routers and vision mixers. All of that core infrastructure has to be replaced in order to even deliver an upscaled regional news service (at which point, they might as well replace the cameras and finish the job).

    There is potentially some good news here though. With the broadcast industry moving to IP-based delivery and routing, we will eventually see entire vision paths that are solely IP-based. This approach is format-agnostic, meaning that it can theoretically be used for any future standards that are introduced. By moving regions to such technologies, these systems would be (to a certain extent) future-proofed. However, this is not an option that is available at the present time.

    With regards to actual delivery, DSAT is the big stumbling point. DTT (which YouView uses) only has to deliver one region per transmitter group, so can mostly use existing infrastructure for BBC One HD with a few modifications. DSAT on the other had requires all regions to have their own version of BBC One HD broadcasting. That's a lot of satellite capacity, and they can't be easily stat muxed as they will be showing the same content 95% of the time, thus all fighting for the same bandwidth.

    Per @Anaglypta, HbbTV could be an option for cheaper delivery - especially for DSAT. However, it will require box replacements for a large proportion of those who bought into HD early on.

    At the end of the day, it is both a logistical and financial nightmare, which (contrary to popular belief) is not a simple problem to solve.
  • AnaglyptaAnaglypta Posts: 738Member ✭✭✭
    edited 25 February 2018, 1:29PM
    Visionman said:
    But BBC Regional News isn't broadcast on an HD channel. So one wouldn't set an HD channel to record it? In fairness thats nothing to do with any particular box or platform.
    With HbbTV you don't need a "HD channel", you just need to feed it HD content from whatever source. In the example in the blog the regional content is being delivered by HbbTV (i.e. IP delivered). This is the way the BBC are planning to deliver their UHD HDR content in future.

    @Peskdale61 agreed. I think, however, that HbbTV could be installed as part of a firmware upgrade to the YouView platform (if it isn't already there).

    John.
    "Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity." - George S. Patton
  • redchizredchiz Posts: 4,648Member ✭✭✭
    "Alexa, can you tell me what Google are snooping on me at the moment?"
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,297Member ✭✭✭
    edited 25 February 2018, 8:29PM
    Visionman said:
    But BBC Regional News isn't broadcast on an HD channel. So one wouldn't set an HD channel to record it? In fairness thats nothing to do with any particular box or platform.
    I’m not sure if you are over-thinking this or under-thinking it.

    I don’t want to record the regional news, I just want to watch it, after I have watched the national news. To do that, seamlessly, I need to put the national news on, on SD not HD.

    If I put the news on 101, then when the regional news comes on, I have to rush to the set and choose 1 and get rid of a bunch of gibbering kayakers, or worse.

    I would like this to be seamless, whether the BBC do it at their end, which they may do eventually, if not on my timescale; or if YouView do it at their end, by switching me to 1 automagically, and switching me back afterwards.

    Kapish?
    ‘Does television exist for us to watch, or do we exist to watch television?’ - Noah Hawley
  • VisionmanVisionman Posts: 8,918Member ✭✭✭
    Better switch channels then. Plus thats nowt to do with the move to HbbTV. Well, not yet, anyway.
  • AnaglyptaAnaglypta Posts: 738Member ✭✭✭
    edited 25 February 2018, 10:06PM
    Roy said:
    Visionman said:
    But BBC Regional News isn't broadcast on an HD channel. So one wouldn't set an HD channel to record it? In fairness thats nothing to do with any particular box or platform.
    I’m not sure if you are over-thinking this or under-thinking it.

    I don’t want to record the regional news, I just want to watch it, after I have watched the national news. To do that, seamlessly, I need to put the national news on, on SD not HD.

    If I put the news on 101, then when the regional news comes on, I have to rush to the set and choose 1 and get rid of a bunch of gibbering kayakers, or worse.

    I would like this to be seamless, whether the BBC do it at their end, which they may do eventually, if not on my timescale; or if YouView do it at their end, by switching me to 1 automagically, and switching me back afterwards.

    Kapish?
    Simplest way to do that then @Roy is to set a "Reminder" Sadly, though, the YV box just puts up a message, but my S-m-u-g TV automatically switches me to the channel (there's no way to set a "Series Reminder" though  :( ).

    John.

    "Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity." - George S. Patton
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,297Member ✭✭✭
    Visionman said:
    Better switch channels then. Plus thats nowt to do with the move to HbbTV. Well, not yet, anyway.
    Yes, absolutely nothing to do with HbbTV, which may or may not have a bearing on whether the BBC can achieve what I want or not.

    But my posting was a suggestion on how YouView could maybe achieve the desired result via automatic channel switching.

    Could you please go back, reread and carefully consider my posting about this, and post anything further about it on the basis of that better understanding?
    ‘Does television exist for us to watch, or do we exist to watch television?’ - Noah Hawley
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,297Member ✭✭✭
    Anaglypta said:
    Roy said:
    Visionman said:
    But BBC Regional News isn't broadcast on an HD channel. So one wouldn't set an HD channel to record it? In fairness thats nothing to do with any particular box or platform.
    I’m not sure if you are over-thinking this or under-thinking it.

    I don’t want to record the regional news, I just want to watch it, after I have watched the national news. To do that, seamlessly, I need to put the national news on, on SD not HD.

    If I put the news on 101, then when the regional news comes on, I have to rush to the set and choose 1 and get rid of a bunch of gibbering kayakers, or worse.

    I would like this to be seamless, whether the BBC do it at their end, which they may do eventually, if not on my timescale; or if YouView do it at their end, by switching me to 1 automagically, and switching me back afterwards.

    Kapish?
    Simplest way to do that then @Roy is to set a "Reminder"

    John.

    No it isn’t. What I suggest above is simpler for me, much, than finding every single regional news programme that I might come across every day, and setting a reminder for it, and then acting on that reminder, when the automatic introduction of a group of gibbering kayakers will serve as that reminder anyway, and I will still have to change channels.

    Whatever is done needs to be simpler than, or at least no more complex than, switching to SD at the start of the news.

    Or leaving the box on SD BBC 1 all day, while the BBC scratch their heads at the disappointingly low takeup of HD, the answer to which is staring them in the face.
    ‘Does television exist for us to watch, or do we exist to watch television?’ - Noah Hawley
  • VisionmanVisionman Posts: 8,918Member ✭✭✭
    Thats a highly opinionated opinion which not only do I not agree with, it also has nothing to do with the topic of this thread. 
  • AnaglyptaAnaglypta Posts: 738Member ✭✭✭
    Sorry @Roy "First world problem"

    John.
    "Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity." - George S. Patton
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,297Member ✭✭✭
    edited 26 February 2018, 9:51AM
    Visionman said:
    Thats a highly opinionated opinion which not only do I not agree with, it also has nothing to do with the topic of this thread. 
    That it would be easier, for me, for YouView to fix this than for me to set reminders? You are welcome to disagree, but I am not clear what with.

    Possibly, though, that there would be a greater takeup of BBC1HD if you could avoid it dropping to the gibbering kayakers after every national news bulletin?

    Self-evident I would have thought; but it is certainly the barrier to this in our house. Maybe not in everybody else’s, though, so this could indeed be highly personal. But having said that, I highly doubt it.

    As regards your ‘also’ point, let me quote from the article:

    Why does your TV always turn on at the last channel you were watching? It’s crazy. If you turned your TV on in the morning to watch breakfast news, why is it that every night at 8:00pm when you get in, your TV puts on BBC News? Even though every day for the last however many years, you immediately change the channel. It’s just crazy. So there’s scope for techniques around time-based personalisation....

    What I was discussing was a further possible time-based personalisation. Your charge of ‘nothing to do with the topic of this thread’ is summarily rejected. 
    ‘Does television exist for us to watch, or do we exist to watch television?’ - Noah Hawley
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,297Member ✭✭✭

    Anaglypta said:
    Sorry @Roy "First world problem"

    John.
    Come back when you and I are in a post-apocalyptic world, scrapping over the remains of the last cat carcass, and we can reminisce about the ‘YouView days’ and what a shame it was they never got to the end of Keith’s wishlist  :D
    ‘Does television exist for us to watch, or do we exist to watch television?’ - Noah Hawley
  • VisionmanVisionman Posts: 8,918Member ✭✭✭
    Roy said:
    What I was discussing was a further possible time-based personalisation. Your charge of ‘nothing to do with the topic of this thread’ is summarily rejected. 
    You have always argued against the personalisation of YouView. Until it suits?  :D
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,297Member ✭✭✭
    edited 27 February 2018, 8:49AM
    Visionman said:
    Roy said:
    What I was discussing was a further possible time-based personalisation. Your charge of ‘nothing to do with the topic of this thread’ is summarily rejected. 
    You have always argued against the personalisation of YouView. Until it suits?  :D
    Until it is some arrangement between me and the box that no other natural person needs to be privy to.
    ‘Does television exist for us to watch, or do we exist to watch television?’ - Noah Hawley
  • VisionmanVisionman Posts: 8,918Member ✭✭✭
    Hmm...
    https://www.avforums.com/news/hdr-and-spotify-coming-to-sky-q.14697
    Ignore the HDR bit. They are some way away from that yet.
  • RoyRoy Posts: 14,297Member ✭✭✭
    Visionman said:
    Hmm...
    https://www.avforums.com/news/hdr-and-spotify-coming-to-sky-q.14697
    Ignore the HDR bit. They are some way away from that yet.
    Thanks for that, Rupert.
    ‘Does television exist for us to watch, or do we exist to watch television?’ - Noah Hawley
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