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Foxtel axes Lifestyle You and cuts Foxtel Arts channel to six hours a day

Foxtel has revealed changes to its channel line up, with Foxtel Arts and Foxtel Smooth to share a broadcast signal, and Lifestyle YOU disappearing.

Effective from October 11,  Lifestyle YOU will cease broadcasting with its programming to be divided across Lifestyle Channel, Arena and on demand, which are available through Foxtel’s Entertainment pack.

Foxtel Arts and Foxtel Smooth will share a broadcast signal but will run on separate channels during different times of day. Smooth programming will run throughout the day from midnight until 6pm, and Foxtel Arts content will run from 6pm to midnight, daily.

Foxtel Smooth runs under the brand license of Nova’s Smooth FM and will continue to deliver contemporary music, while Foxtel Arts will showcase the best performing arts work locally and globally, a statement from the subscription television service said.

What remains of Foxtel Arts will be available to all Foxtel customers, regardless of their subscription package.

Mumbrella understands some redundancies have occurred as a result of the changes.

The cut to Foxtel Arts is the latest of a series of changes to the subscription service’s high culture offering.

In 2009, Foxtel dumped the Ovation channel and replaced it with arts service Studio, which was produced by SBS.

In 2014, Studio was in turn replaced by Foxtel’s own Arts channel.

Last July Foxtel Arts and Foxtel’s suite of music channels – V Hits, Max, Foxtel Smooth and CMC – were merged as a combined team.

The changes are part of Foxtel’s plans to streamline its service.

Foxtel recently underwent a rebrand

Brian Walsh, Foxtel’s executive director of television, said the decision was reached because it made “a lot of sense both in financial terms and audience optimisation”.

“Foxtel Smooth’s peak audiences are in daytime, whilst for Arts, audiences tune in during the evening, so this is really about combining the best of both worlds for our customers. Yes this is consolidation, however, as our television and video world continues to evolve, it is imperative we review every aspect of the business,” Walsh said.

“Foxtel is in the business of curating and acquiring the best content across multi genres and creating strong super channels which serve a wide variety of tastes. The new Smooth / Arts combo and the streamlining of Lifestyle You are examples of that.”

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