Nine Go! es multichannel

Rose Major

Australia’s Nine Network’s new standard-definition multichannel will launch in August, with the catchy moniker Go!.

Targeted at 14-39 year olds, Go! will bring the number of channels on Australia’s version of the Freeview digital-terrestrial TV platform to 13. Freeview welcomed the announcement, with the announcement of Go! following the recent launches of SBS TWO and One HD, while the ABC will launch its dedicated kids channel, ABC3, later this year.

Programming on the new channel will include Nine Network favourites such as Gossip Girl, Terminator – The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Weed, The Wire, The Bachelor, Hell’s Kitchen, Kitchen Nightmares and CSI.

“This multi-channel is a natural evolution for Nine and for free-to-air television,” Mr Gyngell said. “And that's the key word – FREE. It means that within weeks our viewers will have access free of charge to a second channel offering quality and a great deal of first-run content through its schedule.

“It’s a win for our audience because it offers more diversity and substantially wider viewing choices than ever before, at no cost.”

Gyngell added Nine was delighted with the quality, consistency and variety of content available long-term for the Go! channel, guaranteed by the network’s recent renewal of its long-term Warner Bros contract. That had been under threat by interest from Network Ten in the contract.

In fact, youth-skewed Ten is likely to be the channel most affected by the launch of Go!. Seven and Nine skew slightly older and Ten’s second channel a sports service, One. Seven has yet to reveal details of its second channel.

Ian Law, CEO of PBL Media, which owns Nine Network, said: “We are already in the market talking with advertisers about our offering of Nine and GO! and it is a very exciting time for Australian television and the PBL Media Group.”

But the broadcaster has received some criticism (albeit from close rival Seven) for bundling advertising on Go! in with Nine Network. Nine is reportedly offering to automatically run adverts on Go! for any advertiser spending 35% or more of its budget on Nine’s main channel.