SKY News to launch online news channel (but not for Aussie viewers)

skynSKY News is launching an online subscription based news service that will only be available overseas.

The partnership between Australian News Channel and Globecast Australia comes at a time when Australia Network is being shutdown as a broadcast channel, and moves to an online model, Australia Plus television.

SKY’s Australia Channel will comprise of five channels including news, politics, business and sports news and provide locally produced programming to international audiences.

SKY News Director of Digital, Kylie Merritt said: “Australia Channel has a broad remit to provide a comprehensive service allowing subscribers to choose the content they want, and the format they want to watch it in.

“While we are building a go-to news and information service for the expat community, Australia Channel is about much more than that. It will help promote Australian culture and with content from Australia’s only 24 hour business channel, showcase Australian industry and Australia as an investment destination.

“This is not a replacement for the former Australia Network but rather a service that will develop and evolve over time to ensure it is relevant and meets Australia’s international needs.”

Australia Channel, which will not be available within Australia, will launch later this year.

8 Comments:

  1. @Simmyv – True, but the “locals” won’t be at all interested. If they want real news on their TV, for free, they have access to BBC World, NHK, DW-TV, TVNZ News (midday & 6pm feeds), HLN (CNN), France24, Radio Australia, BBCWS, RNZI, VOA, etc., all FTA off the I19 satellite.
    No one in the Pacific is going to waste their slow, expensive wireless Internet connection on this. What they won’t like is losing Home&Away, Blue Water High, Offspring, A Place to Call Home, etc., etc. all gone when AN closes in 3 weeks.

  2. The Oz flagged the likely existence of this months ago. It appears to be Sky News Australia, Sky News Business, APAC and Fox Sports News available via IP to subscribing non-Australian audiences under the title “Australia Channel”.

    So it would provide more Australian TV news to a paying audience in areas with decent broadband than Australia Network did. But that’s not what Australia Network was trying to do.

    Australia Network was getting more-or-less the best Australian content to Asia and the Pacific relatively FTA, with the aim of improving tourism and other trade. It was even available 24×7 FTA terrestrially in some places.

    Australia Network was a bit like the WIN region Gold channel, but rather than trying to sell Crawfords DVDs and random junk, it was trying to sell Australian products and services. Was it as optimised for this task as it could have been? Perhaps not…

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