A consortium of British television channels - including the BBC - have today launched a new online TV streaming site, SeeSaw.
The site is operated by Arqiva, which has developed content agreements with the BBC, Channel 4, Five and several independent production companies contracted by ITV, the Press Association said.
Arqiva's www.seesaw.com went live with over 3,000 hours of programming from all four channels, consisting mostly of archival TV from the past decade.
The service is currently advertising-based, with ads displayed before and after the programme. But the company plans to introduce a pay model in the future for premium content.
SeeSaw was created after the Competition Commission blocked a similar venture by the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 in February last year. Arqiva paid around £8 million (€9.2 million) for the assets of the defunct project, which had been codenamed “project Kangaroo.”
Meanwhile, US online video firm Hulu, which has been trying for some time to break into the UK, has hit another hurdle in its path.
The service, which is backed by News Corp, NBC Universal and Disney, has been attempting to negotiate similar content deals with ITV, Channel 4 and Five.
But talks with ITV ground to a halt this week, a source told The Telegraph, and it has yet to reach arrangements with the other channels.
The company has been seeking to negotiate exclusive content deals with UK broadcasters for the better part of the year. But besides the Arqiva partnership, Channel 4 and Five have also signed agreements with YouTube.