Television in the Netherlands

(Redirected from Dutch television)

Television in the Netherlands was officially introduced in 1951. In the Netherlands, the television market is divided between a number of commercial networks, such as RTL Nederland, and a system of public broadcasters sharing three channels, NPO 1, NPO 2, and NPO 3. Imported programmes (except those for children), as well as news interviews with responses in a foreign language, are almost always shown in their original language, with subtitles.[1]


In the Netherlands, television can be watched analog or digital (the latter with the option of HDTV or UHD). Over 2018, 89.2% of Dutch viewers received television digitally.[2] Analogue television is only available via some cable operators and some fiber to the home providers, since the Dutch government ended analogue reception via airwaves in 2006. Dutch largest cable company Ziggo began to phase out the analogue signal in 2018.[3][4] Watching digital television is possible through a variety of ways, the most common being:

Which television channels can be received is heavily dependent on the operator and in most cases also the channel package that is paid for. However, there is a small selection of channels that every operator must carry. Since 2014, these are the following channels:[5]

Public channelsEdit

The Netherlands has three nationwide channels for publicly funded television (NPO). These channels can only make a fixed maximum amount of money from commercials. These commercials never interrupt broadcasts, and are only shown in between shows. The broadcasting organisations that use these channels are basically representative of the Dutch society. Every broadcasting company has members and the number of members gives them a status that is connected to the number of hours of broadcasting. Acceptance or refusal of entry is decided politically on the guidance of public opinion.

In 2005, there was a sharp political debate over government plans to cut funding to public broadcasters and to abolish statutory broadcaster NPS.


The three national television channels are:


The five digital television channels that are provided by the Nederlandse Publieke Omroep organisation, are:


There is also an international public channel:

  • BVN, It shows the best of Dutch public television for Dutch viewers abroad. It was also formerly shared with Belgium's publicly funded Flemish television channel VRT.


Most regions and provinces have their own television channel as well. These also receive government funding:

Commercial channelsEdit

RTL NederlandEdit

Talpa NetworkEdit

Paramount Networks EMEAAEdit

Warner Bros. DiscoveryEdit

The Walt Disney CompanyEdit


AMC Networks InternationalEdit

NBCUniversal International NetworksEdit

SPI InternationalEdit

BBC StudiosEdit

A&E NetworksEdit

Stingray DigitalEdit


RadioCorp BVEdit


The following (international) commercial channels broadcast localized versions of their programs:

Foreign domestic channelsEdit

While there are many localised versions of international channels meant for the Dutch market, many television providers also broadcast 'domestic television' networks as part of the basic subscription package. Other 'domestic' channels may be received as part of extended packages. Many basic subscriptions include:


United KingdomEdit






In the Netherlands customers can receive high-definition television channels by cable or satellite. Until 2018 there was no terrestrial HD service available. KPN started to switch its digital terrestrial television platform to the DVB-T2 HEVC standard in October 2018,[7] this transition completed on 9 July 2019.[8]

The first trials with high-definition television in the Netherlands began in 2006 with the broadcast of the 2006 World Cup in HD. After the trial the larger cable companies continued a HD service with a small number of channels such as National Geographic Channel HD, Discovery HD Showcase, History HD, Film1 HD and Sport1 HD. The demand for HD was low because no Dutch network had made the move to HD. Broadcasting in widescreen and the quality of the standard-definition PAL signal was good enough for most people.

Since the 2006 trials, none of the main Dutch networks made the move to HD. This changed in the summer of 2008 when from 1 June 2008 until 24 August 2008, the Netherlands Public Broadcasting (NPO) organisations made their primary channel, Nederland 1 temporary available in HD. This made it possible to broadcast Euro 2008, the 2008 Tour de France, and the 2008 Summer Olympics in HD and additionally allowed them to test their systems before the scheduled launch of their permanent HD service in early 2009. The NPO planned to launch their permanent HD service with HD versions of their three channels Nederland 1, Nederland 2, and Nederland 3. Most of the programming in the early stages consisted of upscaled material from their SD channels as in time more programs became available in HD.[9] Technicolor Netherlands [nl], the company responsible for the technical realisation of the broadcasts of the NPOs television and radio channels, began the summer 2008 test broadcast of Nederland 1 HD in 720p/50 as the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) recommends. During the test period an additional 1080i/25 version of the channel was made available to the cable companies because of quality complaints from viewers. In 2009 the NPO decided to adopt the 1080i/25 HD standard.[10]

The main commercial broadcasting organizations in the Netherlands the SBS Broadcasting Group (NET 5, SBS 6, Veronica) and the channels of RTL Nederland followed in HD via cable and satellite, using the same HD standard as the NPO.


The first television channels in 4K UHD were officially launched in the Netherlands in 2017. In April 2017, satellite provider CanalDigitaal added Insight TV 4K UHD in its channel line-up.[11] After more than a year of testing, KPN launched ultra-high-definition television on 1 July 2017, with Xite 4K and Hispasat 4K TV.[12][13] Eurosport 4K launched in the Netherlands on 5 June 2018.[14] NPO 1 launched its first trials with ultra-high-definition television through KPN, CanalDigitaal and some minor networks on 14 June 2018, using the HLG standard.[15][16][17] Ziggo Sport is available in UHD from March 2021.[18]

Defunct or rebranded channelsEdit

Television in other languagesEdit

To serve those who have another native language than Dutch, there are few television channels in the Netherlands broadcasting in one of the regional languages of The Netherlands. Those broadcasting in English usually target an international audience as well. Most of these channels broadcast through the internet only or have a very limited broadcasting area, with Omrop Fryslân as most notable exception. These channels are:


Sport 7TV10Family7Euro7MTV NederlandMTV EuropeKindernetNickelodeonKindernetComedy CentralThe BoxDisney XDJetixFox KidsTMFTMF9TMF6SBS 9Veronica (SBS)V8FoxTV10TV10 GoldNET 5SBS 6RTL 8TienTalpaVeronica (2002-2003)VTVRTL 7YorinVeronica TV (HMG)RTL 5RTL 4RTL-VéroniqueBVNZomer TVNPO 3Nederland 3NPO 2Nederland 2TV2Nederland 2NPO 1Nederland 1

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Television, Satellite & Radio Stations in the Netherlands".
  2. ^ Stichting Kijkonderzoek. "Television in the Netherlands, 2018" (PDF). Retrieved 21 September 2019.
  3. ^ "Ziggo maakt tv-aanbod volledig digitaal" [Ziggo makes TV-offer fully digital] (in Dutch). VodafoneZiggo. 8 March 2018.
  4. ^ Julian Huijbregts (8 March 2018). "Ziggo begint in april met uitschakelen van analoog tv-signaal" [Ziggo to start shutting down analogue TV signal in April]. Tweakers (in Dutch).
  5. ^ "Tv kijker kan rekenen op minimaal 30 digitale zenders". 8 November 2013.
  6. ^ Jarco Kriek (July 24, 2012). "Ziggo heeft exclusieve primeur RTL Telekids" (in Dutch). Totaal TV.
  7. ^ Jarco Kriek and Jan-Hein Visser (25 June 2018). "Omschakeling Digitenne DVB-T2 en HD begint op 1 oktober in het noorden". (in Dutch). Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  8. ^ Jarco Kriek (8 July 2019). "Digitenne in heel Nederland in HD met DVB-T2". (in Dutch). Retrieved 28 July 2019.
  9. ^ Paulo Lopes (2008-05-19). "Nederland 1, 2 en 3 in 2009 deels in HDTV". Marketingfacts (in Dutch). Retrieved 2009-10-21.
  10. ^ Eric van Ballegoie (23 June 2009). "Publieke Omroep HD in 1080i formaat". Hardware.Info (in Dutch). Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  11. ^ Jarco Kriek and Jan-Hein Visser (4 April 2017). "CanalDigitaal voegt Ultra HD-zender Insight TV aan aanbod toe". (in Dutch). Retrieved 3 September 2018.
  12. ^ Jarco Kriek (5 May 2017). "KPN komt eindelijk met Ultra HD-abonnement". (in Dutch). Retrieved 3 September 2018.
  13. ^ Jarco Kriek (3 July 2017). "KPN officieel met Ultra HD begonnen". (in Dutch). Retrieved 3 September 2018.
  14. ^ Jarco Kriek (31 May 2018). "Eurosport 4K bij KPN". (in Dutch). Retrieved 3 September 2018.
  15. ^ Jarco Kriek (5 June 2018). "Canal Digitaal begint testuitzending NPO 1 UHD". (in Dutch). Retrieved 3 September 2018.
  16. ^ Jarco Kriek (16 July 2018). "De eerste wankele UHD-stappen NPO zijn gezet". (in Dutch). Retrieved 3 September 2018.
  17. ^ Jarco Kriek (16 June 2018). "NPO 1 UHD bij meer aanbieders". (in Dutch). Retrieved 3 September 2018.
  18. ^ Jarco Kriek (24 February 2021). "Niet alleen Formule 1 maar meer sport in 4K Ultra HD bij Ziggo" (in Dutch).
  19. ^ Jarco Kriek (20 April 2010). "Food Network Channel in Nederland beschikbaar". (in Dutch). Retrieved 31 January 2019.
  20. ^ Noel van Bemmel & Ronald Ockhuysen (19 October 1996). "Op zoek naar kwaliteit voor het pluspakket". de Volkskrant (in Dutch). Retrieved 31 January 2019.

External linksEdit