BBC Trust approves Canvas

The BBC Trust, the public broadcaster’s governing body, has approved Project Canvas, the connected TV joint venture between the BBC, ITV, BT, Five, Channel 4, Talk Talk and Arqiva.

The Project Canvas partners immediately welcomed the Trust’s approval of the project. The news marks the conclusion of a regulatory process that began in February last year, when the BBC Trust published the initial proposals for the project.

Project director Richard Halton said: “We are delighted by today’s news. The BBC Trust has subjected the proposals to the highest level of scrutiny and the findings reflect over a year of consultation and debate. The partners will work through the final conclusions and conditions and step up our engagement with the wider industry as we plan towards a consumer launch. 

Technical specifications for the platform must be published within the next 20 days and the final core technical specification must be published no later than eight months before launch of the first set-top boxes.

The Trust also specified that the BBC must not break state-aid rules and that the costs of the project must not exceed the BBC Executive’s estimate by more than 20% over a five-year period.

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