Mon Jan 14, 2019 12:26 am
The UK version set to join other free-to-air counterparts in Europe
DMAX UK takes over Travel Channel's slot on Freeview channel 42 and Freesat 150 on 16th January 2019. Ahead of the change, the channel's satellite signal went free-to-air on Tuesday evening.
Originally launched as a pay TV channel in the UK and Ireland in 2007, Discovery intends to make the channel its entertainment destination in the UK. It comes two years after Discovery and Sky agreed new terms which would allow Discovery to launch new free-to-air services in the UK.
The first DMAX channel launched in Germany in 2006, where it has become Discovery's flagship non-sports free-to-air channel. DMAX is also free-to-air on Italian digital terrestrial television, where it's been on air since the beginning of the decade.
The UK version of the channel will feature shows including Goblin Works Garage, Naked And Afraid, Life Below Zero and Man Vs Food. To bolster the entertainment schedule, DMAX has also acquired FX’s animated spy comedy Archer in a deal with international distributor Endemol Shine International.
The launch of DMAX on Freeview marks Discovery's first major portfolio change since its acquisition of Scripps Networks, which has given it access to additional Freeview slots and comes ahead of an expected split of UKTV, which will see Discovery acquire direct control of some of UKTV's channels. It also comes as Discovery phases out the traditional Travel Channel format in various territories - the US version of the channel has rebranded itself "Trvl".
Eagle-eyed viewers may have noticed how a number of programmes are currently being shown on Travel Channel UK and DMAX UK, including Barnwood Builders, Alaska: The Last Frontier, Fast N' Loud, Tanked, Bear Grylls: Born Survivor, Treehouse Masters, Life Below Zero and Baggage Battles.
Until now though, DMAX UK has had the appearance of being slightly unloved by Discovery, with very little promotion and few updates on the channel's social media accounts.