As BT yesterday proudly announced its third quarter results, it said that the 60,000 viewers BT Vision has scraped together was "in line with expectations" and that roll out of the service had "steadily accelerated" in line with its plans. Which confused me.
There's a touch of the Stalins here. At launch BT predicted that by the end of the year "hundreds of thousands" of punters would make like the gimpy guy out of My Family, and sign up to BT Vision. (Let's face it, BT isn't shelling out enough advertising wedge to buy a mid-ranking African nation for only 120,000 eyes to be trained on its online TV thingy ).
At launch the official BT line [geddit?] was: "BT will start to fulfil orders from that customer base from mid December , initially connecting thousands of customers then hundreds of thousands by the end of 2007. BT aims to have two to three million BT Vision customers in the medium term."
But yesterday BT said that, with 30,000 customers waiting for BT Vision, there would be 100,000 punters come the end of the year. Well, I make that 90,000 but go on, I'll give you it. And I suppose 100,000 is - just about - "hundreds of thousands", right? Er...
Not quite. As a BT spokesman told the Register: "When we said the end of 2007, we of course meant the end of the financial year."
Riiiigggght. So, BT Vision is going to have "hundreds of thousands" of customers by the end of March? We'll see. What seems odd to me is that BT is going through this whole charade. How about: 'uptake's not as good as expected, but it's increasing steadily'. Because it is.
But then that would entail treating the great unwashed as sentient beings, and we're not sure even PC Advisor can advise such behaviour.