Full TVNZ content on SkyTV from June-July this year

, posted: 25-Mar-2009 16:03

Maybe it was due to political pressure from National, but TVNZ and Sky Television say they have come to an agreement that means all of the state broadcasters's channels will be available on the latter's service.

This means high-definition versions of TV ONE and TV2 will be available to MySkyHDi viewers from June 1, and the digital TVNZ 6 and 7 channels from July 1.

TVNZ will provide regional advertising from July 1 too, on TV ONE, and of course, the state broadcaster's full content will now reach a combined audience of two million viewers. No doubt this makes TVNZ look financially rather attractive, perhaps ahead of the rumoured sell-off by the National government.

While TVNZ's policy is to be available on every screen in New Zealand, you have to wonder where this leaves the digital Freeview service. In fact, I'll ask them... stand by, blog update coming up.

TV3 can't be happy about this though.

Update As RedJungle says below, how about it, Sky? Prime TV on Freeview. Surely that's only fair?

Update II An industry watcher suggests that Prime axing its news service may be related to this announcement.

Update III Comment from Freeview CEO Steve Browning: "Freeview has never been about exclusivity. We are NZ’s only open digital TV and radio platform, which means we do not require any channel to be Freeview exclusive."
"We always expected TVNZ 6 and 7 to be made available on Sky. The appeal of Freeview is once you have purchased a Freeview approved receiver all the channels are free. Conversely, with SKY you are paying a monthly subscription to watch free-to-air digital channels."

"We believe that the added exposure for these channels on Sky will draw attention to what viewers can get elsewhere for free and that’s good news for Freeview,” he says.


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