Broadband and mobile operator Orange has dropped dropped it's interest in Project Kangaroo, the on-demand television service from the BBC, ITV and Channel4 that was blocked by the Competition Commission. The companies invested around £20m in the technology underlying the player that it is thought Orange were interested in deploying in France.
"We can confirm that we are not pursuing our interest in the catch-up TV service Kangaroo. After in-depth due diligence, we concluded that it was unlikely that an outcome which benefited France Telecom's Orange operations would be met."Statement from Orange's parent company, France Telecom
In other video on-demand news, Hulu, a popular US TV streaming service is expected to launch in September with a UK version. The company backed by NBC Universal, Disney and News Corp. are said to be in talks with the BBC, ITV and Channel4 over airing their content, although there is a reported sticking point on the rights to sell advertising space during the material. ITV and Channel4 are looking for control of the ads that will be shown before, during or after their content whilst Hulu want the rights to sell this directly. One light at the end of the tunnel may be a recent deal between Channel4 and Google over the ad space in material shown on Youtube. We have to hope that when this does appear it will be compatible with things like Project Canvas that are in development to provide a standardised set-top box for viewing online on-demand content.