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Italy ends 2017 with 423 TV channels

April 4, 2018

From Branislav Pekic in Rome

At the end of December 2017 there were a total of 423 TV channels in Italy that could be received on the main distribution platforms.

The channels belong to 116 media groups (Italian and international), of which 68 are based in Italy, according to a report published by Confindustria Radio Televisioni (CRTV), the association of the Italian radio and TV broadcasters.

The data refers to TV channels distributed by national and local DTT multiplexes and present on pay-TV and free-to-view satellite platforms. The figures also include time-shift, HD, 3D, PPV, and so-called temporary channels, transmitted during the period considered.

The number of channels has continued to grow thanks mainly to the development of the FTA offer on DTT, a distribution platform that continues to attract strong interest from national media groups. In just the last year there has been 5 newly launched TV channels (POP, CineSony, Spike, Alpha, and Food Network).

Italian media groups own 356 TV channels, of which 123 are on DTT and 287 on satellite (free and pay). This number includes 39 time-shifted versions and 35 PPV services. The overall offer of primary TV channels (so-called parent without duplicate versions) on the various platforms is 225. There were 106 HD channels  on the different platforms, while one channel transmits 3D content.

There are 124 FTA channels (DTT and TivùSat) and 232 subscription services (Sky Italia and Mediaset Premium). Among FTA channels, 95 are present on the DTT platform, while among pay-TV channels, 203 are on satellite and 30 on DTT. HD channels are mainly present on satellite (93), while 7 new FTA HD channels launched in 2017 (on DTT and TivùSat), for a total of 26. The HD offer on pay-TV amounts to 80.

The national broadcasters with the biggest number of channels on all platforms are Sky Italia (113), Mediaset Group (42), Rai (26), Fox Italia (24) and Discovery Italia Group (21). Most of them have a diversified offer of FTA and pay-TV channels, with the exception of public broadcaster RAI (only FTA) and Fox (only pay-TV).

Mediaset offers the most channels (42) on the DTT platform, followed by Rai (19), and Discovery Italia (9). Mediaset on its pay-TV platform Mediaset Premium (27 proprietary channels), also includes several pay-TV channels from third-parties (Discovery Italia, NBC Universal, Turner Broadcasting).

On satellite TV, Sky Italia has the most channels (113), mainly pay-TV (TV8 and Cielo are FTA on Tivùsat). Second is Rai (26), whose satellite offer has expanded in recent years with the launch of HD versions of its specialised channels; followed by the FOX Group (24) and Discovery Italia (20) with a mixed pay/free offer divided between Sky Italia and Tivùsat.

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