Bell Satellite launches YTV and Family Channel in high definition

High definition versions of The Family Channel and YTV have launched this week on Bell Satellite TV. Astral’s Family Channel HD is airing on channel 1642 while Corus’ YTV HD can be found on channel 1648.

While the channels advertise themselves as high definition, a review of the stations last night found the programs to be nothing more than 4:3 standard definition shows upconverted to high definition.

Playhouse Disney télé launches on Bell TV

Playhouse Disney télé, a commercial free French-language channel for preschoolers, began broadcasting at 10 a.m. this morning on Bell TV.

Programming on the channel include Disney programming such as La Maison de Mickey (Mickey Mouse Clubhouse), Les 101 Dalmatiens (The 101 Dalmatians), Agent spécial OSO (Special Agent OSO), and Canadian programs such as Marguerite et la bête féroce (Maggie and the Ferocious Beast) and Elliot (Elliot Moose).

Astral gets a new look

Astral Media, Canada’s largest radio broadcaster and a major player in Specialty television, today announced its shedding its decade old logo.

Replacing it will be a new multi-hued logo developed by Toronto based creative agency Juniper Park.

HBO shows now available at Bell TV online portal

Bell TV and Astral have recently announced that select HBO television programming is now available through the Bell TV Online portal.

HBO titles available over an internet connection include The Pacific, How to Make it in America, Big Love, Real Time with Bill Maher and Treme, as well as the new seasons of True Blood, Hung and Entourage.

CRTC approves new romance and adventure channels

In two separate broadcasting decisions handed down this week by the CRTC, the federal regulator approved two applications by Astral Media for new national, English-language Category 2 specialty television channels in Canada.

The new channels are Superstar, which will air romance programming and TV-Time, which will air action and adventure programming.

Astral announces Radiothon in support of Sick Kids

Astral Media, Canada’s largest radio broadcaster with 82 licensed radio stations in 8 provinces, has announced it will be airing its second National Day of Caring for Kids Radiothon on April 29th.

The Radiothon will air from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m local time on fifty-seven English-language radio stations in 30 cities.

Virgin radio 999 named station of the year

Last week at an industry awards ceremony, Toronto’s Virgin Radio 999 was announced as the Canadian Radio station of year.

Since its inception about 18 months ago, the station which is owned by Astral Media and under license with Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Radio International has become Canada’s most listened-to Contemporary Hit Radio station in the 2+ segment.

Playhouse Disney coming to Videotron

Astral Media has announced that Playhouse Disney Canada will be coming to Videotron Digital Cable subscribers on January 20th.

Playhouse Disney Canada is a multiplex channel from Family Channel featuring popular Disney programming and Canadian produced children’s programming.

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