Sky channel shuffle

If you don’t have Sky, this post will mean nothing to you, but for the ten million households that do, there’s going to be a bit of a shake-up of channel numbers in the next couple of weeks that you’ll probably want to know about. Full details of the channel moves follow.

On February 1st, several things are going to happen, following Sky’s purchase of the Living TV Group from Virgin Media last year. Firstly, they’re going to rebrand Living as Sky Living, they’re going to close down Channel One (which only just changed its name from Virgin 1), and as I’ve mentioned before, they’re going to launch the new Sky Atlantic channel.

At the same time, for viewers who have Sky’s HD pack, they’re going to swap some HD channels with the standard definition version. So, HD viewers will find Sky News HD, for example, move from channel 517 to 501, while everyone else will continue to see the normal version on 501. It means that the five Sky Sports HD channels will happily sit from channel 401 to 405, instead of the current hard-to-remember 408, 409, 418, 454 and 455. Not every HD channel will swap – for example, BBC One HD can’t swap with BBC One because it doesn’t carry local news, while Discovery HD can’t swap with Discovery Channel because it carries a separate schedule.

As well as the HD channel swap, which will affect the three million or so HD viewers, there are some other changes coming which will affect all Sky viewers, as the company fills up the empty slots left by the closures of Channel One and Bravo, plus Sky Living’s promotion to a higher position on the Electronic Programme Guide. Prime slots are being given to Comedy Central, Universal, Syfy, FX and MTV. Yes, MTV, it’s finally being reclassified from a music channel to general entertainment, after years of having a schedule full of reality shows and no music. They’ll be launching a new channel, called MTV Music, to plug the gap and retain their coverted channel 350 slot. It’s especially good to see FX given more prominence, it’s a great channel which will get more exposure in it’s new slot.

So, starting from the 1st of February, here’s how the first couple of screens of the EPG will look in the UK:

101 BBC One
102 BBC Two
103 ITV1 / STV / UTV
104 Channel 4 / S4C (Wales)
105 Five
106 Sky1 (HD)
107 Sky Living (HD)
108 Sky Atlantic (HD)
109 Watch
110 GOLD
111 Dave
112 ComedyCentral (HD)
113 Universal (HD)
114 Syfy (HD)
115 BBC Three
116 BBC Four
117 Channel 4 (Wales only)
118 ITV2 (HD)
119 ITV3 (HD)
120 ITV4 (HD)
121 Sky Living+1
122 Sky Livingit
123 Sky Livingit+1
124 FX (HD)
125 Challenge
126 MTV
127 Comedy Central +1
128 Comedy Central Extra
129 Sky2
130 Sky Living Loves

And, if you need to know, here’s the full list of channels which will be swapping if you’re a HD viewer:

Comedy Central HD
Disney Cinemagic HD
Disney XD HD
E4 HD
Eden HD
ESPN America HD
ESPN HD
FX HD
Good Food HD
History HD
ITV2 HD
ITV3 HD
ITV4 HD
Luxury Life HD
Nat Geo HD
Nat Geo Wild HD
Nickelodeon HD
Sky Arts 1 HD
Sky Arts 2 HD
Sky Atlantic HD
Sky Living HD
Sky Movies Action HD
Sky Movies Classics HD
Sky Movies Comedy HD
Sky Movies Drama & Romance HD
Sky Movies Family HD
Sky Movies Indie HD
Sky Movies Modern Greats HD
Sky Movies Premiere HD
Sky Movies ScFi &Horror HD
Sky Movies Showcase HD
Sky Movies Crime & Thriller HD
Sky News HD
Sky Sports HD1
Sky Sports HD2
Sky Sports HD3
Sky Sports HD4
Sky Sports News HD
Sky1 HD
Syfy HD
Universal HD

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