Monday, October 25
Sky has confirmed plans to reshuffle its entertainment channel lineup from next year, including the rebranding of Living TV and arrival of new channel Sky Atlantic.
From early 2011, Sky Atlantic will launch exclusively on Sky to host content from the satellite broadcaster's recent multi-million pound deal with US studio HBO.
After acquiring The Living TV Group from Virgin Media in June, Sky has announced that the Living channel will be rebranded as Sky Living from next year.
The two channels plus Sky1 will appear side-by-side on the front page of Sky's electronic programme guide (EPG) - Sky1 will remain at channel 106, with Sky Living moving to channel 107 and Sky Atlantic coming to channel 108.
Sky1, Sky Living and Sky Atlantic will be available to all existing Sky customers at no extra charge as part of the basic subscription package.
All three channels will also be available in high definition and a selection of their content will be offered on Anytime+, Sky's new video-on-demand service.
Upcoming drama highlights on Sky1 include Mad Dogs, Martina Cole's The Runaway, Sinbad and the return of Chris Ryan's Strike Back. The channel will also air a raft of original British comedy, such as Little Crackers, Stella, Mount Pleasant and This Is Jinsy.
Alongside the rebranding exercise, Sky Living will also see its programming budget increase by 25% to help the channel produce and acquire more original content. The move follows Sky's decision to shut down The Living TV Group's Bravo and Channel One networks to concentrate on the Living brand.
When it launches next year, Sky Atlantic will air a variety of brand new shows from HBO, including Boardwalk Empire, Game Of Thrones, Luck and Tremé, as well as the new series of AMC's Mad Men, poached from the BBC.
"In Sky1, Sky Living and Sky Atlantic we have three outstanding channels which will sit loud and proud at the top of the EPG," said Sophie Turner Laing, Sky's managing director of entertainment, news and broadcast operations.
"Investment in stand-out content is at the heart of our strategy and we’re delighted to be able to offer customers so much choice and quality across our expanded entertainment lineup.
"Taken together, these channels will have real cut through. Quite simply, they will be channels worth paying for and will give even more customers reasons to choose pay-TV."
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