At a press launch in central London this morning Channel 4 demoed the “all-in-one digital hub”, which will host all of UK broadcaster’s linear channels, digital content and other online services in one place for the first time.
The new service will place more emphasis on short-form, exclusive digital content, and is designed to offer an “increasingly personalised” service as it evolves, Channel 4 revealed.
Speaking at the launch, Channel 4’s director of strategy and technology, Keith Underwood said: “4oD as a brand and a consumer proposition represents a product which is almost exclusively focused on the provision of long-form video-on-demand content; content, which more specifically, has been previously broadcast on our linear channels.
“Going forward our strategy is shifted. We want to provide and promote a wider range of content experiences – from live simulcast channels, to more short-form content, from interactive games [to] curated social media feeds.”
All 4 will initially be available on PC and as an app for iPads and iPhones, with an Android version slated to follow.
The service will be free, but viewers who want to watch long-form archive or catch-up content must register, providing information such as name, email address, age and gender – details which will help Channel 4 in its personalisation efforts
Underwood said that rather than overhaul 4oD with the new features, and risk cluttering the interface, with All 4 the broadcaster has gone “back to the drawing board to re-imagine and reinvent the product from scratch.”
Also speaking at the launch, Channel 4’s head of All 4 and digital content, Richard Davidson-Houston, described All 4 as “a seventh channel, sitting alongside its linear siblings, creating a multi-platform, multi-channel network that meets the very needs of our viewers.”
The All 4 interface is divided into three sections: ‘On Demand’, where viewers can watch catch-up content, archive programmes and box-sets; ‘Now’ for viewing Channel 4’s live linear channels, and, over time, other “in-the-moment content experiences; and ‘On Soon’ which showcases upcoming previews and promos.
A new line-up of original online shorts will also be available across all areas of All 4, including Rich Kids Go Shopping, Drones in Forbidden Zones and Body Mods.
Channel 4 said that registered viewers to All 4 will receive an “enhanced viewing experience” including tailored recommendations, exclusive content and premieres, downloads, access to the Channel 4 programme archive and “VIP rewards”.
Channel 4 premieres on All4 are available up to seven days before and episode’s linear TV broadcast. In addition, O2 priority customers will also have access to some Channel 4 programmes up to 48 hours before linear TV broadcast.