UKTV’s W Goes Free-to-Air


UKTV is relaunching W as a free-to-air entertainment channel and making it available on its direct-to-consumer UKTV Play service.

W will be relaunched on March 28 in Freeview slot 25. Viewers will have access to a range of hit UKTV originals for free, including the upcoming shows Alex Jones: Making Babies, Rochelle Humes: Interior Designer in the Making, Nurses on the Ward and Dating With My Mates, alongside new seasons of Stacey Dooley Sleeps OverMasterChef USA, Australia and Canada; and Inside the Ambulance. Viewers will also have the chance to see Emma Willis: Delivering Babies and Myleene Klass: Miscarriage and Me for the first time.

Coinciding with the switch to free-to-air, W is rebranding and repositioning itself as the home of genuine human moments, leading with the tagline “Life Unfiltered” to connect with its female-skewing 25-to-44 target audience.

W’s channel director, Adam Collings, said, “We are thoroughly delighted to be bringing W’s brilliant original content featuring some of the best-known talent in the U.K. alongside heroes of everyday society to a much wider audience wherever they want to watch or stream. We’re looking forward to showcasing the genuine human moments embodying W’s new mantra ‘Life Unfiltered’ and can’t wait to share W’s rich mix of shows filled with joy, tears and laughter with our new free-to-air audience.”

Steve North, UKTV’s genre general manager for comedy and entertainment, said, “We are confident that we’ve spotted a gap in the free-to-air market for W to fill; providing premium entertainment for people with busy lives who want to engage with shows that shine a spotlight on personal stories from everyday lives. W’s launch on UKTV’s direct-to-consumer VOD service, UKTV Play, will also mean that shows are more accessible than ever.”