Anime Network's 24/7 Linear Service Discontinued
posted on by Egan Loo
The Anime Network, A.D. Vision's television and streaming service, has officially announced that it discontinued its 24/7 linear service. The service had actually been discontinued at the beginning of the year. Anime Network still supports its Video-on-Demand (VOD) service for digital cable providers, Sprint Mobile streaming for mobile phones, and Online Player for personal computers. It officially launched its Online Player broadband service in December after a one-month test run.
Propeller TV, a channel on the United Kingdom's Sky Digital satellite service, has also discontinued its daily two-hour Anime Network programming block at the beginning of the year. Although Propeller TV's website still mentions anime, its schedule no longer carries regular anime programming, and its link to the Anime Network UK site now redirects to Anime Network's main American site. Propeller TV had first carried the block during a 13-week Sunday run last May, before expanding the block to daily runs in September.
Anime Network's 24/7 linear service began service on June 30, 2004 on the Insight Communications Cable service provider in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio. The network's VOD service was officially announced and launched two years earlier in 2002. The 24/7 linear service later spread to other regional service providers, but the major service providers eventually decided to carry the VOD service only. A.D. Vision head Matt Greenfield had emphasized as early as 2005 that the VOD service was "the future" of Anime Network. According to Greenfield, the linear service was mainly provided because some service providers had indicated that they would more likely adopt the VOD service if there was a 24/7 linear service to complement it.
Anime Network's cancellation of its 24/7 linear service leaves Funimation Channel as the only 24/7 linear service in North America, although only Verizon's FIOS TV service and New York City's terrestrial WRNN-DT3 broadcaster actually carry Funimation's programming 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Most of Funimation Channel's other providers only carry the anime programming in two-hour blocks. Sony's Animax linear channel has been carrying anime programming 24/7 in many parts of Europe and Asia, including in its home territory of Japan.