Sky Living and Sky Atlantic to launch 2011

Living will be rebranded as Sky Living from early 2011.

The name change will take place following Sky’s acquisition of the Living TV Group of channels from Virgin Media earlier this year (first resulting in the recent Virgin1 rebrand to Channel One – the channel which is now facing the axe in the coming months along with Bravo).

A new channel called Sky Atlantic will also launch early next year.

Sky Living will appear next to Sky1 on the Sky EPG on channel 107 and Sky Atlantic will appear next to it on channel 108. Sky Living and Sky Atlantic will both be available in HD as well.

The name change for Living will also take place on Virgin Media’s TV platform. It’s unknown whether Sky Atlantic will appear on Virgin Media’s TV service, but it’s likely that it will at some stage, if not from the initial launch.

The official press release from Sky says:

“Sky Living – Living, the home of programmes such as Britain’s Next Top Model, Four Weddings, Chuck and upcoming UK drama series Bedlam, was acquired by Sky from Virgin Media earlier this year. To build on the channel’s success as one of the UK’s leading pay TV channels, it will re-brand as Sky Living from early 2011 and benefit from a 25% increase in on-screen investment. It will move to a new slot of #107on the Sky EPG from its current position at #112”.

“Sky Atlantic – From early 2011, the brand new channel will provide an exclusive home to some of the most eagerly anticipated shows intelevision, including all of HBO’s new series such as the already critically acclaimed Boardwalk Empire and the forthcoming Game of Thrones, Luck and Tremé. Sky Atlantic will also be the exclusive home of Mad Men from 2011”.

Click here to read the Sky press release in full.


Virgin Media signs deal with NBC Universal

Virgin Media customers will soon have access to an array of NBC programmes on demand.

An official press release from Virgin Media says:

“Virgin Media today announced a deal with NBC Universal International Television Distribution for the video-on-demand rights in the UK to a broad selection of NBC Universal series. Under the terms of the agreement, these titles will be offered as new content across Virgin Media’s three entertainment platforms; TV, online and mobile. From the 1st December Virgin Media customers will be able to access past seasons of great shows such as House, Heroes, The Office (U.S.) and 30 Rock, whether in HD at home through its TV On Demand service or via its online and mobile ‘Virgin Media Player’ services”.

Click here to read the Virgin Media press release in full.

NBC Universal

Sky Anytime+ launches Monday

Sky Anytime+ will launch on Monday.

The new on-demand service will be available for Sky+ HD customers who have a Sky Broadband service.

Anytime+ extends the normal Anytime service currently available to offer many other programmes which are downloaded to your Sky+ HD box over your Sky Broadband broadband connection on-demand as you want them. It also upgrades the Anytime menus on your box to provide new thumbnail views and improved navigation.

Sky say Anytime+ is “a virtual library of entertainment, including 500 movies, series box sets, documentaries and much more all ready to watch at a time that suits you”. Anytime+ content varies depending on which viewing packs you subscribe to.

Click here to find out more Anytime+ information on Sky’s website.

Sky Anytime+

Sky Movies Christmas returns 1st December

Sky Movies Christmas will launch as a temporary Sky Movies channel for this year’s festive season – like it did last Christmas. The channel will consist entirely of Christmas films.

Sky Movies Showcase will be rebranded as Sky Movies Christmas on Wednesday 1st December.

Sky Movies Showcase HD will be rebranded as Sky Movies Christmas HD.

They will be rebranded back to Sky Movies Showcase and Sky Movies Showcase HD after the Christmas period.

Sky Movies

Further details for BBC One HD announced

We previously posted that BBC One HD will launch on the 3rd November and now further details on the launch of BBC One HD have been announced.

BBC One HD will launch at 7pm on the 3rd November on Freesat channel 108, Freeview HD channel 50, Sky channel 143 and Virgin Media channel 108. It will be a simulcast of the standard definition BBC One channel.

The first programme to air on the channel at 7pm will be The One Show (in HD), then Wallace And Gromit World of Inventions (in HD).

Programmes shown on BBC One HD that aren’t in HD will be upscaled to a better picture quality like other channels do (such as Channel 4 HD) The BBC have announced they hope to have most of the BBC One schedule available in full HD by 2012.

EastEnders will broadcast in HD for the first time on Christmas Day this year.

The original BBC HD channel will remain but will now mostly air programmes from BBC Two, BBC Three, BBC Four and further coverage of sporting events.


BBC One HD to launch on the 3rd November

BBC One HD will launch on Wednesday 3rd November, according to the BBC Reception pages on their official website.

BBC One HD will be a simulcast of BBC One.

The existing BBC HD channel will remain but will now mostly air content from BBC Two, BBC Three and BBC Four.

BBC One HD will be available on Freesat and Sky from launch, and it’s thought it will launch on Virgin Media at the same time. It will also be available on Freeview (for people with Freeview HD boxes) in due course.


Hallmark Channel has rebranded as Universal Channel

The Hallmark family of channels have rebranded as Universal Channel (Sky channel 130 and Virgin Media channel 162), Universal Channel +1 (Sky channel 150 and Virgin Media channel 163) and Universal Channel HD (Sky channel 220) respectively. Programming remains largely unchanged.

Universal Channel