CBS Action gets going on Freeview channel 70

Fans of US action and sci-fi dramas from the have a new must-see channel on Freeview from 1st October 2014, with the arrival of CBS Action on the digital TV service.

Also available in homes with YouView, the channel will screen old favourites including Star Trek: The Original Series - digitally remastered and The Streets of San Francisco alongside more recent hit series NCIS and CSI. British action series Ultimate Force and classic comedy Cheers complement the schedule.

The channel moves to channel 70 to launch on the 1st October, once the current message on channel 70 directing CBBC viewers to its new channel number is removed. A placeholder for CBS Action appeared on channel 90 ahead of the 3rd September Freeview retune day, and on some devices the channel may remain on 90 until a further retune is conducted.

CBS Action is carried on the same frequency as 4Music, VIVA and Ideal World and will reach just over 90% of UK households. Bandwidth that was used for an extra BBC Red Button service earlier this year will be used to carry the channel on Freeview.

The channel, which is owned by CBS Studios International and AMC Networks International - Zone continues to be available on Freesat channel 137, Sky 148 and Virgin Media 192.

This is the second CBS channel to launch on Freeview this year. Sister channel CBS Reality launched with slightly less fanfare on channel 66 in April, bagging bandwidth that shopping channel bid tv had vacated on 31st March, just weeks before the channel closed altogether. This currently leaves CBS Drama as the only CBS-branded channel in the UK not yet on Freeview.

When details of the channel's launch was first confirmed at the beginning of September, Tanya Gugenheim, Chief of Business Development at the channel's operator AMC Networks International - Zone said: “Following the successful launch of CBS Reality on DTT in April, we are excited that CBS Action is now also going to be available to Freeview homes. CBS Action showcases the best in action dramas and sci-fi, so a really great fit with the Freeview audience.”

Guy North, Marketing Communications Director, Freeview said: “The launch of CBS Action is great addition to our existing channel lineup. The channel will give Freeview homes even more entertainment programmes, without the need to pay a monthly subscription.”

TruTV+1 meanwhile is preparing to launch on channel 69 on 30/09, but as a part-time channel, broadcast between 0500-0800, according to Freeview programme data. The long-term purpose of this service is unknown, but numerous broadcasters do operate part-time services to hold a channel number until either more capacity becomes available to launch full-time or until they can use the slot for another new service.

Further Freeview capacity was recently offered by multiplex operator Arqiva. The outcome of the competitive bidding process is likely to become clear by mid-November, when the capacity becomes available.

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