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Sky Sports News (SSN) is a British pay television sports news channel run by Sky, a division of Comcast.

Sky Sports News
Sky Sports News logo.svg
Launched1 October 1998
Owned bySky
Picture format1080i HDTV
(downscaled to 16:9 576i for the SDTV feed)
Audience share0.56% (April 2019 (2019-04), BARB)
SloganYour home of sports news
Formerly calledSky Sports.com TV
(2000–2001)
Sky Sports News HQ (2014–2017)
Sister channel(s)Challenge,
Pick,
Real Lives,
Sky One,
Sky Two,
Sky Arts,
Sky Atlantic,
Sky Cinema,
Sky News,
Sky Sports,
Sky Sports F1,
Sky Sports Box Office,
Sky Sports Racing,
Sky Witness
Websiteskysports.com
Availability
Satellite
SkyChannel 409 (SD/HD)
Channel 863 (SD)
Cable
Virgin Media
(UK)
Channel 509 (HD)
Channel 519
Virgin Media IrelandChannel 408
Channel 438 (HD)
WightFibreChannel 85
D-SmartChannel 82
IPTV
TalkTalk TVChannel 401
Streaming media
Sky GoWatch live
Virgin TV Anywhere (UK)Watch live (UK only)
Now TVWatch live (UK)
Watch live (Ireland)
Virgin TV Anywhere (Ireland)Watch live

Contents

OverviewEdit

The channel focuses on football but reports on a range of sports; sports to which Sky do not possess broadcasting rights receive limited coverage. The programming is presented by two anchors in the studio who read the news or introduce short clips featuring highlights and interviews. Tabs at the bottom of the screen give unrelated information on other sports, while a sidebar also shows unrelated league tables or other information. The content of the main studio feed generally repeats.

The live programming is from 6:00am to midnight. It plays the replay edition of Through the Night continuously all night long (when there is no important breaking news or events coverage).

Live sportEdit

On 20 May 2007, SSN broadcast the Conference National play-off Final between Exeter City and Morecambe. This was the first live match to be shown on the channel since certain European games involving British teams were shown to provide exclusivity when competing with the then operational OnSports (owned by ITV) as Sky Sports News was not available at that time via digital terrestrial platforms.[citation needed] This was due to all other Sky Sports channels being occupied by live sport. This enabled Freeview viewers to watch a live match on Sky Sports. The station also had live coverage of Wales v New Zealand on 26 May 2007 and the La Liga tie between Espanyol and Barcelona in December 2007.

HistoryEdit

 
Sky Sports News viewing figures

Sky Sports News launched on 1 October 1998, the launch date of BSkyB's Digital Satellite service, and was BSkyB's first digital only channel. On 10 April 2000, SSN relaunched as Sky Sports.com TV, to tie with the launch of the SkySports.com website.

The channel scrapped its ".com TV" look, and on 1 July 2001, Sky Sports News launched another graphics change. A major part of this was the standardisation, i.e. a more corporate look across the Sky channels. The channel also scrapped its slogan and just paid attention to the fact of the news.

From April 2002, Sky Sports News had another face-lift. The channel stayed in the same studio, but with a silver look replacing the old wooden bench, and there was a promise of being first for breaking news, along with much more useful information.

In 2004, Sky Sports News changed its image, with a more open blue look to the channel. The titles featured players such as Frank Lampard, Tim Cahill, Thierry Henry and Ryan Giggs passing the football to each other and unveiling the Sky Sports News logo. Programmes such as Ford Sports Centre were dropped, and replaced with shows such as Sky Sports Now, Sky Sports Today, Sports Saturday, Sports Sunday, Good Morning Sports Fans, Through the Night, News HQ at 5, News HQ at 6, Gillette Soccer Special, Goals Express, Today's Goals Now and Sky Sports News at Ten.

The channel also previously used a different piece of music for each news programme, the most well-known of these being Republica's "Ready to Go", "The Time Is Now" by Moloko, "Surface to Air" by The Chemical Brothers, "Shooting Star" by Deepest Blue, and "Club Foot" by Kasabian.

Sky Sports News was rebranded as Sky Sports News HQ on 12 August 2014. The new studio is twice the size of the old one and includes an 18 square-metre video wall.[1] As part of the change the channel moved to Sky channel 401.[2] New graphics were also introduced, as part of the launch. Following the rebrand of the Sky Sports channels in July 2017, the channel was once again renamed Sky Sports News.

RevampsEdit

 
Sky Sports News – August 2007, featuring former presenter Dan Lobb

In August 2014, Sky Sports News was rebranded as Sky Sports News HQ and moved to Channel 401 to be at the forefront of Sky Sports channels. Within this introduction the channel introduced an updated studio including brand new features, overhauled graphics and a new theme.[3]

HD channelEdit

Sky Sports News HD launched on 23 August 2010 on Sky channel 455,[4] transferring to channel 405 several months later. The HD channel offered enhancements such as widescreen viewing and sharper graphics. A range of new programmes, such as First Fast Now and Sky Sports News at Seven were launched plus new presenters, as well as the extension of existing offerings, such as Ed Chamberlin presenting a regular live Sunday afternoon sports update.[5]

Sky backed the launch of the channel with an extensive advertising campaign, including an advert featuring its current presenters, stressing that the new channel would make it the first sports broadcaster to have five high definition channels.[6]

ProgrammesEdit

  • Good Morning Sports Fans, Weekdays 6:00am–10:00am and weekends 7:00am–10:00am News and views on today's early stories, a look at the back pages, a tip on today's racing and a sporting weather forecast.
  • Premier League Daily, Weekdays 10:00am–11:00am
  • Sky Sports Daily, Weekdays 11:00-12:00pm
  • Sky Sports Today, Weekdays 12:00pm–5:00pm and weekends 10:00am–12:00pm The latest sports news and developments.
  • Sky Sports News at 5 and Sky Sports News at 6, Weekdays 5:00pm–7:00pm The complete round-up on the day's sports headlines.
  • Sky Sports Tonight, Weekdays 7:00pm–10:00pm & weekends 6:00pm–10:00pm This evening's top sports news stories.
  • Sports Saturday and Sports Sunday, Weekends 12:00pm–6:00pm Rolling live news coverage of everything sport throughout the day.
  • Sky Sports News at 10, Daily 10:00pm–11:00pm A round-up of the day's sports news, featuring highlights and interviews with the players and managers making the headlines.
  • Through the Night, Daily 11:00pm–12:00am and repeated every hour until 6:00am (weekdays) and 7:00am (weekends) A round-up of the day's talking points and a look ahead to the events that are likely to make the news tomorrow, featuring previews and interviews.

Discrepancy between Sky and FreeviewEdit

From 2002, Sky Sports News was available free to view on digital terrestrial TV. On Sky's digital satellite service, the channel was made available to the Sports Pack from 1 September 2009, in addition to being available in the News & Events Pack.[7]

Sky Sports News was removed from Freeview on 23 August 2010 and replaced with Sky3+1, a one-hour timeshift Sky3.[8][9][10] Approval for the DTT change was needed from the regulator Ofcom, which told Sky and multiplex licence holder Arqiva that the move "would not unacceptably diminish the capacity of the services broadcast to appeal to a variety of tastes and interests."[11]

Sky claimed that the move back to pay TV allowed them to improve the channel through increased editorial investment.[12]

Virgin Media disputeEdit

On 1 March 2007, Virgin Media removed Sky's basic channels including Sky One, Sky Two, Sky News, Sky Sports News, Sky Travel and Sky Travel Extra, from their Television Services after a dispute between Virgin Media and BSkyB caused by the expiry of their carriage agreement and their inability to reach a new deal,[13] after attempts were made to reach an agreement. At Midnight, Sky Sports News was removed, with its EPG slot being renamed derisively as "OLD SKY SPORTS SNOOZE" (it was removed with a public apology by Richard Branson hours later). As a direct rival to Sky Sports News, Virgin Media and Setanta Sports launched Setanta Sports News on 30 November 2007.

A deal was eventually reached between Virgin and Sky resulting in Sky Sports News returning to the Cable platform on 13 November 2008 on channel number 517.[14]

SimulcastsEdit

A number of programmes are simulcast on other Sky Sports channels, including the 06:00 to 09:00 portion of breakfast sports news programme Good Morning Sports Fans, Soccer Saturday and many of the midweek Soccer Specials.

Soccer Saturday has been simulcast on other Sky Sports channels for many years. Until the 2007/08 season most or all of the programme was broadcast on Sky Sports 1. This was cut back in August 2007 to just the live scores section of the programme i.e. between 15:00 and 17:15. Simulcasting of Soccer Saturday on Sky Sports 1 stopped altogether in August 2010 but returned to Sky Sports 1 for the 2013–14 season as part of Sky Sports 1 devoting all of Saturdays to football. The simulcast ran between 15:00 and 16:55. For the 2014–15 season the simulcasts switched to the newly launched Sky Sports 5.

Until 1 July 2013, two hours of live feed (daily at 07:00 BST, weekdays at 17:00 BST) and one hour of delayed feed (daily at 23:00 BST) were picked up by Fox Soccer in the United States; both Fox Soccer Channel and Sky Sports were News Corporation channels at the time. More hours of the channel were picked up in critical periods such as the end of transfer windows and coverage of qualifying draws for Euro tournaments. The American simulcasts were discontinued on that date as Fox Cable Networks wound down Fox Soccer's operations for the 2 September 2013 launch of FX sister channel FXX on its channel space for the launch of Fox Sports 1 and Fox Sports 2. Until March 2017, the only Sky output carried on an American network was darts coverage and Sky Sports 2's coverage and related programming, such as The Verdict, involving the England cricket team on ONE World Sports. ONE World Sports closed in March 2017. Sky's English team coverage has since moved to Willow in the United States, including the pre-show and The Verdict.

Upon Comcast's acquisition of Sky, the network began to collaborate with new sister U.S. network NBCSN (which holds the Premier League rights for the United States), beginning with transfer window coverage being simulcast by the channel, and Sky reporters contributing to an NBCSN-produced transfer window programme hosted by its own Premier League pundits. In February 2019, it was announced that an hour of programming from Sky Sports News would air daily at 11:00 a.m. ET beginning 4 March, as part of a larger realignment of the channel's morning schedule due to having lost rights to a television simulcast of Dan Patrick's radio show.[15]

Notable presentersEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Sky Sports News to undergo complete overhaul and will be relaunched as Sky Sports News HQ". Daily Mail. 23 July 2014. Retrieved 24 July 2014.
  2. ^ "Sky Sports News HQ will launch on August 12 on the new channel of 401". Sky Sports. 23 July 2014. Retrieved 23 July 2014.
  3. ^ Newton, Thomas (8 August 2014). "Sky Sports News HQ: First look at the new studio". Recombu. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  4. ^ "Programme Information Highlights" (PDF). Sky Programme Information. Retrieved 6 August 2010.
  5. ^ "Sky Sports News HD to launch on August 23". Digital Spy. 20 July 2010.
  6. ^ JSfan85 (10 July 2010). "Reporting for Duty- Sky Sports News presenters" – via YouTube.
  7. ^ "Sky Sports News to join the sports pack". Digital Spy. 30 July 2009.
  8. ^ "Sky Sports News to get bigger and better as a pay TV channel". British Sky Broadcasting. 17 June 2010.
  9. ^ "Sky Sports News to go subscription-only". Media Week. 17 June 2010.
  10. ^ "Sky Sports news to be replaced by Sky3+1 on Freeview". UK Free TV. 17 June 2010.
  11. ^ "Sky Sports News to move to pay". Broadband TV News. 17 June 2010.
  12. ^ Bigger and better! Sky Sports, 24 August 2010
  13. ^ Sky One, Sky News pulled from Virgin Digital Spy, 1 March 2007
  14. ^ Sky1, Sky News back on Virgin cable Digital Spy, 4 November 2008
  15. ^ "NBCSN will replace the Dan Patrick Show with a PFT Live replay and an hour of Sky Sports News". Awful Announcing. 26 February 2019. Retrieved 26 February 2019.
  16. ^ Sky shows Natalie Sawyer the door after 16 years The Times, 29 March 2018

External linksEdit