YouView set-top boxes will have at least 320GB, two tuners, HDMI and Wi-Fi

YouView has revealed what you can expect from its set-top boxes with details of the Web-connected telly hardware.

Richard Trenholm Former Movie and TV Senior Editor
Richard Trenholm was CNET's film and TV editor, covering the big screen, small screen and streaming. A member of the Film Critic's Circle, he's covered technology and culture from London's tech scene to Europe's refugee camps to the Sundance film festival.
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YouView set-top boxes, which will let you watch online catch-up and on-demand services, will have at least half a gigabyte of RAM and a hard disc of at least 320GB for recording TV, the organisation has announced.

Its boxes will be powered by Linux, have at least one HDMI connection, two USB ports, an Ethernet socket and 802.11n Wi-Fi. Two DVBT/T2 tuners mean you can watch one channel and record another.

Huawei, Manhattan, Pace and Vestel are on board to make the boxes, YouView says. They join Cisco, Humax and Technicolor, so it looks like there'll be plenty of choice about which boxes to get. Those manufacturers often make hardware branded with the name of the service provider -- Sky+ or Virgin Media boxes, for example -- so it's possible YouView hardware will be branded by TalkTalk or other ISPs.

Each manufacturer will design their own remote controls, so there won't be a standard design.

YouView, formerly known as Project Canvas, is a group effort by broadcasters and ISPs to create a standard for Internet TV -- basically, a set-top box that connects to the Web instead of grabbing telly signals from the air. The companies involved are the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Five, BT, TalkTalk, and Arqiva. The board includes novelty TV businessman Lord Alan Sugar

Unfortunately YouView won't launch until next year, which gives competitors such as Sky and Virgin Media time to establish their own rival services.