Channel 4 Rolls Out Broadband Simulcast Service

Channel 4 Rolls Out Broadband Simulcast ServiceChannel 4 has today launched a new broadband Simulcast service, making their live TV schedule available online for viewing, for free.

To access the content users will need to register at

Once registered, PC users will be able to sit back and watch a streamed version of Channel 4’s TV schedule, broadcast at the same time as their live TV transmission.

Broadband users – and no doubt, bored office workers sneaking a peek – will be able to sneakily indulge themselves with a feast of Channel 4’s original content, although films and acquired shows (such as the hugely popular Lost or Desperate Housewives), are off the menu for now.

Channel 4 Rolls Out Broadband Simulcast ServiceChannel 4 has, however, said that it is negotiating with US studios to add their content at a later date.

The programming will carry the same commercials as the regular Channel 4 TV service, and where the current programming is not available, a rather less-than-enticing sounding “loop of Channel 4 promotions” will be broadcast.

The streamed Channel 4 programmes will also be accessible via the channel’s Website for up to seven days after transmission.

Channel 4 Rolls Out Broadband Simulcast ServiceAppearing in a thundercloud of enthusiasm, Channel 4 CEO Andy Duncan was on-beam and on-message and rapidly hit evangelical overdrive, describing the Web transmission as an opportunity “to build on what Channel 4 has always done – stimulate, infuriate, debate, create,” adding that he didn’t see the digital revolution as an attack on Channel 4’s power as a public broadcaster, but as a “fantastic opportunity,”

After taking a breather, he continued, “It is our stated aim to make Channel 4’s public service programming available across all meaningful platforms and to be the first UK broadcaster to begin simulcasting our content on broadband is a significant step towards delivering on this objective.”

Channel Four’s decision to slap their live TV content up on the Web is indeed a significant development, and proof of how new media is redefining distribution channels.

Despite this, many of the most popular consumer electronics devices remain rooted around a traditional TV, with Freeview boxes and widescreen LCD and HD sets enjoying huge sales.