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ITV3 is an entertainment television channel in the United Kingdommarker, that is owned by ITV Digital Channels Ltd, a division of ITV plc. The channel launched on 1 November 2004.


ITV3 launched on the terrestrial (Freeview), cable (Virgin Media) and digital satellite (Sky Digital) on 1 November 2004 at 9.00pm and is also available on Tiscali TV IPTV.

The channel had been available from launch on NTL Ireland, but was pulled on 22 March 2006. This is believed to have been at the request of ITV plc, which had previously barred Irish newspapers from publishing details of ITV channels and regions other than UTV and Men & Motors.

Originally, speculation was rife over whether it would launch on the Digital Satellite platform immediately. On 1 November 2004, ITV took full control of Granada Sky Broadcasting, and ceased broadcasting the Plus channel. ITV3 took its channel number and bandwidth meaning all platforms could launch simultaneously. Staff at Plus were given 15 minutes' notice. On satellite, it is available as a free-to-air channel, and as such does not require an active Sky Digital subscription.

As Freeview announced plans for a retune on 30 September 2009, ITV3 moved to a alternative multiplex. Viewers in areas that have completed switchover who receive their signal from a local relay transmitter and receive 'Freeview Lite', are no longer be able to receive ITV3.

Viewership and programming

ITV3 share of viewing 2004-2007 BARB figures
The channel is mainly aimed at the over-35 audience, and much of its output consists of reruns of older ITV drama series and sitcoms. The company are hoping to use it, and extra investment into its ITV2 channel to triple non-terrestrial revenue within five years. ITV's attempt to secure more ratings for the channel has led to the network purchasing the exclusive terrestrial television rights to a number of newer and in some cases popular US drama series, such as NUMB3RS and more recently Law & Order: Trial by Jury.

ITV launched a one hour timeshift channel of ITV3 on Monday, 30 October 2006. ITV2+1 launched on the same day. This channel is often unable to broadcast certain programmes "for legal reasons", but the programme in question might still be listed on the EPG.

During the 2007 Rugby World Cup, ITV3 broadcast some of the matches while ITV1 and ITV4 were showing live European football matches which were being played at the same time.


Crime Thriller Awards

The ITV3 Crime Thriller Awards were first held on 3 October 2008, and were broadcast on ITV3 on 6 October. ITV3 controller Emma Tennant devised the awards to "cement ITV3's reputation as the home of great storytelling and, in particular, great crime thrillers". In 2009, the awards were merged with the Crime Writers' Association Daggers.


External links

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