A silent launch of Seven’s new high-def channel 7HD took place last night with the screening of the movie The 25th Hour at 10:30pm and welcome messages from Anna Coren, David Koch, Sonia Kruger and Matthew White. There were also sneak peeks of next week’s Prison Break, Bionic Woman and Heroes.
Seven was due to launch the channel in December, but has jumped the gun on plans by Nine to launch first in November. TEN, which announced it would be the first, launches in December.
Seven launched the first phase of its multi-channelling plans at 10:30pm and will schedule programming on its second channel in late primetime and across weekends. The full channel will be running by December. A third Channel Seven will launch in the coming fifteen months.
The 7HD channel should be viewable on Channel 70. UPDATED.
The Seven Network has launched a new channel. Seven – with the first broadcast last night (Monday) – is the first commercial network to move into digital multichannelling.
Seven launched the first phase of its multi-channelling plans at 10:30pm and will schedule programming on its second channel in late primetime and across weekends as part of a considered strategy leading to the full-strength launch of a second Channel Seven in a few weeks – delivering greater choice to Australian television audiences.
Last night’s launch of the second Seven is the first step in a broad long-term plan to deliver more channels and provide viewers with the opportunity to experience full high definition programming with Dolby Digital Sound, complementing Seven’s current programming and opening up opportunities for the marketing of high-definition television sets and tuners that will allow Australians to experience multiple channel digital broadcast television.
Details of Seven’s plans for its new channels were announced today by the network’s Chief Executive Officer and Chief Executive Officer of Seven Media Group, Mr David Leckie.
“This is the biggest launch I have ever been involved in. I have never been so excited,” Mr Leckie said. “We are in a fantastic position. We have more content and more creative people than our competitors and we are setting out to blitz them.
“We are the first to move into new channels,” Mr Leckie said. “Our introduction of a nightly two hour channel and different programmes across weekend daytime complementing our primary Seven channel is the first step towards a second Channel Seven before Christmas and a third Channel Seven in the coming fifteen months.
“We have been one network for more than five decades. From last night, we are now two networks and we’ll be three networks by early 2009. We can’t wait. Our people can’t wait. And, we believe Australian television audiences will embrace this explosion of choice in content on broadcast television.”
Seven’s second channel was launched with the network television premiere of the movie 25th Hour and Seven is planning the scheduling of first release movies on Monday, Wednesday and Friday nights. Across Tuesday and Thursday, Seven will schedule a first-run high definition US series “The Grid”. On weekend daytimes, Seven’s significant sports schedule on its primary channel will be complemented by children’s and family programming through its output agreement with The Walt Disney Company.
This “breakaway” schedule is the first step – with a complete primetime schedule for the second Channel Seven to be launched in the coming weeks. The “look and feel” and on-air presentation marketing and promotion for the new channel will be unveiled to coincide with the launch of the complete schedule for the second Channel Seven in the coming weeks. Planning is well advanced in the production of new high definition programmes that leverage Seven’s acknowledged leadership in Australian production and the scheduling of episodes of many of Australia’s most-watched television series.
Seven’s launch of the new channel coincides with the anniversaries for the launch of television in Australia in 1956 and the introduction of color television in October 1974 (with test transmissions of specific programmes before the full launch of color television in March 1975).
The launch of the new commercial network – the first new network in Australia in more than four decades – reaffirms Seven’s leadership in broadcast television, with Seven number 1 in breakfast television, news and public affairs, primetime and sports.
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Additional source: What’s on the Tube