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BBC Television is a service of the British Broadcasting Corporation. The corporation has operated in the United Kingdom under the terms of a royal charter since 1927. It prooduced television programmes from its own studios since 1932, although the start of its regular service of television broadcasts is dated to 2 November 1936.
The BBC's domestic television channels are broadcast without any commercial advertising and collectively they account for more than 30% of all UK viewing. The services are funded by a television licence.
As a result of the 2016 Licence Fee settlement, the BBC Television division was split, with in-house television production being separated into a new division called BBC Studios and the remaining parts of television (channels and genre commissioning, BBC Sport, BBC Three and BBC iPlayer) being renamed as BBC Content.
The BBC operates several television networks, television stations (although there is generally very little distinction between the two terms in the UK), and related programming services in the United Kingdom. As well as being a broadcaster, the corporation also produces a large number of its own programmes in-house and thereby ranks as one of the world's largest television production companies.
John Logie Baird set up the Baird Television Development Company in 1926; on 30 September 1929 he made the first experimental television broadcast for the BBC from its studio in Long Acre in the Covent Garden area of London via the BBC's London transmitter. Baird used his electromechanical system with a vertically-scanned image of 30 lines, which is just enough resolution for a close-up of one person, and a bandwidth low enough to use existing radio transmitters. The simultaneous transmission of sound and pictures was achieved on 30 March 1930, by using the BBC's new twin transmitter at Brookmans Park. By late 1930, thirty minutes of morning programmes were broadcast from Monday to Friday, and thirty minutes at midnight on Tuesdays and Fridays after BBC radio went off the air. Baird's broadcasts via the BBC continued until June 1932.
- BBC One
- The Corporation's primary network, broadcasting mainstream comedy, drama, documentaries, films, news, sport, and some children's programmes. BBC One is also the home of the BBC's main 30-minute news bulletins, currently shown at 13:00, 18:00, and 22:00 (on weekdays; times vary for weekend news bulletins) and overnight bulletins from BBC World News every Monday to Sunday. The main news bulletins are followed by local news. These are provided by production centres in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland and a further 14 regional and sub-regional centres in England. The centres also produce local news magazine programming.
- Shutdown of all UK analogue television stations began in 2008 and finished in October 2012, leaving only digital transmission for terrestrial services.
- A high definition simulcast, BBC One HD, launched on 3 November 2010.
- BBC Two
- Home to more specialist programming, including comedy, documentaries, dramas, children's programming and minority interest programmes, as well as imported programmes from other countries, particularly the United States. An important feature of the schedule is Newsnight, a 50-minute news analysis programme shown each weeknight at 22.30. There are slight differences in the programming for England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland. The most notable is a separate final 20 minutes for Newsnight broadcast in Scotland.
- A high definition simulcast, BBC Two HD, launched on 26 March 2013.
- BBC Four
- Niche programming for an intellectual audience, including specialist documentaries, occasional 'serious' dramas, live theatre, foreign language films and television programmes and 'prestige' archive television repeats.
- A high definition simulcast, BBC Four HD, launched on 10 December 2013.
- BBC News
- A dedicated news channel. Time-shares with BBC World News 00:00–06:00 & 21:00-22:00 daily
- A high definition simulcast, BBC News HD, launched on 10 December 2013.
- BBC Parliament
- The Corporation's dedicated politics channel, covering both the UK Parliament, Scottish Parliament, Welsh Assembly, Northern Ireland Assembly, and international politics.
- For children aged seven and above.
- A high definition simulcast, CBBC HD, launched on 10 December 2013.
- For children under seven.
- A high definition simulcast, CBeebies HD, launched on 10 December 2013.
- Although this Welsh language channel is not operated by the Corporation, the BBC contributes programmes funded by the licence fee as part of its public service obligation. The BBC used to broadcast Welsh-language programmes on its own channels in Wales, but these were transferred to S4C when it started broadcasting in 1982.
- BBC Alba
- A part-time Scottish Gaelic channel. Although it carries the BBC name, it is a partnership between the BBC and MG Alba, with the majority of funding coming from the Scottish Government via MG Alba. Scottish Gaelic programmes are also shown on BBC Two in Scotland – subject to approval from the BBC Trust, they will move to BBC Alba after digital switchover.
- BBC Three
- Home to mainly youth-oriented programming, particularly new comedy sketch shows and sitcoms.
- On 16 February 2016, BBC Three, moved online-only
- BBC World News
- An international, commercially-funded twenty-four-hour news channel, not officially available to UK viewers but is shown on BBC News/BBC One/BBC Two between 00:00-05:30 and three editions 11:30-12:00 on BBC Two/ 19:00–19:30 on BBC Four and 21:00-22:00 on BBC News Channel (From June 2015).
- BBC America
- A US general entertainment channel, distributed in co-operation with AMC Networks, showcasing British television programming.
- BBC Arabic TV
- A news and factual programming channel broadcast to the Middle East and North Africa. It was launched on 11 March 2008.
- BBC Canada
- A Canadian general entertainment channel, co-owned with Corus Entertainment.
- BBC HD
- A high-definition channel, currently available in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, Turkey, Uruguay, Venezuela, Poland.
- BBC HD Nordics
- A high-definition channel, currently available in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Iceland, and Turkey.
- BBC Kids
- A Canadian children's programming channel co-owned with Knowledge West Communications.
- BBC Entertainment
- Broadcasts comedy, drama, light entertainment and children's programming by BBC and other UK production houses, available in the following regions: Asia, Europe/Middle East, India, Latin America, Nordic, Poland, and South Africa.
- BBC Lifestyle
- Lifestyle programming, currently available in Poland, Scandinavia, Hong Kong, Singapore, and South Africa.
- BBC Knowledge
- Documentaries and factual programming, currently available in Australia, Bulgaria, Hong Kong, Indonesia, New Zealand, Poland, Scandinavia, Singapore, and South Africa.
- BBC UKTV
- An entertainment channel in Australia and New Zealand, carrying drama and comedy programmes from the BBC, Talkback Thames, ITV, and Channel 4.
- BBC Brit
- An entertainment subscription television channel featuring male-skewed factual entertainment programming. Launched 1 February 2015 in Poland, April 2015 for Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Iceland replacing BBC Entertainment
- BBC Earth
- A documentary subscription television channel featuring premium factual programming. Launched 1 February 2015 in Poland, April 2015 for Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Iceland and as of 14 April 2015 in Hungary replacing BBC Knowledge also set to replace BBC Knowledge in Asia (Cambodia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mongolia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam) as of 3 October 2015 - 21h00 Singapore/Hong Kong Time
- BBC First
- An upcoming entertainment subscription television channel featuring drama and comedy programming. Launched 1 February 2015 in Australia it also launched in the Netherlands on 16 May 2015 and on cable service Telenet in the Flemish Region of Belgium began to receive the channel from 4 June 2015,
- Commercial television network in the United Kingdom, co-owned with Scripps Networks Interactive. The channels broadcast mainly BBC archive and specially produced programming.
- BBC Persian
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