Virgin Media tunes into 4K with UK’s first dedicated UHD entertainment channel

10 September 2018

  • Virgin TV Ultra HD will broadcast great entertainment in incredible picture quality from 17 September
  • Iain Stirling, narrator of 'Love Island’, will be the ‘voice of the channel’ for its launch night

Virgin Media is launching the UK’s first dedicated 4K ultra high definition (UHD) entertainment channel, which will start broadcasting from next week.

The Virgin TV Ultra HD channel will air a line-up of must-see shows in incredible picture quality from Monday 17 September.

The channel will be exclusively available for Virgin TV Full House and VIP customers with a V6 set-top box. These customers can tune into a collection of critically acclaimed dramas, beautifully shot documentaries and get up close to some of the biggest names in music with a selection of hot-ticket concerts; all in dazzling UHD detail and at no extra cost.

The schedule is packed with blockbuster entertainment series such as ‘Start Up’ with Martin Freeman, ‘Masters of Sex’ starring Michael Sheen and political powerhouse ‘House of Cards’ as well as wildlife and nature documentaries set in Zambia and Vietnam, plus gigs from the Rolling Stones, Sting and Imagine Dragons.

A number of these programmes will be broadcast for the first time on UK television, such as ‘Start Up’ as well as ‘Shut Eye’ with Isabella Rosselini and ‘The Art of More’ with Dennis Quaid.

To celebrate the launch of Virgin TV Ultra HD, comedian, author and ‘Love Island’ narrator, Iain Stirling will become the ‘voice’ of the channel for its opening night next Monday.

David Bouchier, Virgin Media’s Chief Digital Entertainment Officer, said:

“With the launch of Virgin TV Ultra HD we’re giving our customers the ultimate entertainment viewing experience with must-see shows in incredible, crystal-clear picture quality.

“From epic dramas and stunning documentaries to the front row feeling of a rock concert, our customers will get closer to the action than ever before – with four times the picture quality of HD. It really is the next best thing to being there.

“We’ve shown some of this year’s biggest sporting events in Ultra HD, such as the Champions League and Wimbledon finals and we’re now giving entertainment the Ultra HD treatment. It’s all part of our ongoing investment to give our customers the best way to watch the best TV.”

Iain Stirling said:

“I can’t wait to get behind the mic for the launch of the Virgin TV Ultra HD channel and introduce some brilliant shows in awesome picture quality.

“I like the idea of an ultra-high definition channel being championed by a man more known for what he sounds like than looks like!”

Dazzling detail in glorious ultra HD

Virgin TV Ultra HD will air on channel 999 and broadcast at prime-time until the early hours. The channel will begin broadcasting from 8.20pm on the launch night.

Virgin Media customers with 4K televisions and a V6 set-top box can take their TV viewing to the next level when watching UHD programming as they will experience life-like picture quality, unbelievably crisp colours and stunning detail.

The V6 is Virgin Media’s fastest, smartest and smallest set-top box and offers lightning fast access to YouTube and Netflix in 4K. The V6 is free to new customers taking one of Virgin Media’s bundles (TV, broadband and telephone). Nearly two million Virgin TV customers have a V6 box in the UK.

Full House and VIP customers without a 4K set can still watch Virgin TV Ultra HD as the picture will automatically adjust to HD quality.

The new channel continues Virgin Media’s continued investment in 4K UHD programming, following the launch of BT Sport 4K UHD on Virgin TV in August.

Virgin Media has also broadcast an array of sporting events in 4K UHD including the Champions League Final, the 2018 French Open, Wimbledon Championships, as well as a selection of matches from this year’s World Cup.


Note to editors:

Virgin TV Ultra HD programme highlights:

  • ‘Start Up’ airs on Mondays at 10pm and stars Martin Freeman. The show explores what happens when a brilliant yet controversial tech idea gets funded with dirty money, from three entrepreneurs you would never find in Silicon Valley. Distributed by Sony pictures television.
  • ‘Shut Eye’ airs on Tuesdays at 10pm and is a UK network premiere. It’s a darkly-comic look at the activities of storefront psychics and the underground criminal syndicate that controls them. The series stars Jeffrey Donovan (Burn Notice), KaDee Strickland (The Sixth Sense), Isabella Rossellini (Blue Velvet). Distributed by Sony pictures television.
  • From the producers of ‘Blue Planet’ and ‘Planet Earth II’, Love Nature’s ‘The Big Dry’ will air Monday to Wednesday at 8pm during launch week. Set in Zambia’s Luangwa Valley, this visually stunning documentary series follows the challenges the valley’s wildlife must overcome during the long dry season as they await the life-giving rains.
  • ‘The Art of More’ airs on Thursdays at 10pm and is a UK network premiere. Graham Conner (Christian Cooke), a blue-collar former soldier turned auction house executive, leads a dangerous double life as he uses his secret past to beat the auction world elite at their own game. Distributed by Sony pictures television.
  • ‘Masters of Sex’ airs on Fridays at 10pm featuring Michael Sheen as renowned obstetrician Dr. William Masters who hires sexually liberated, single working mother Virginia Johnson (Lizzy Caplan) as his assistant in carrying out pioneering, intimate research into human sexuality. Distributed by Sony pictures television.

About Virgin Media

Virgin Media offers four multi award-winning services across the UK and Ireland: broadband, TV, mobile phone and landline.

Our dedicated, ultrafast network delivers the fastest widely-available broadband speeds to homes and businesses and we’re expanding this through our Project Lightning programme, which could extend our network to up to 17 million premises.

Our interactive Virgin TV service brings live TV, thousands of hours of on-demand programming and the best apps and games to customers through a set-top box, as well as on-the-go through tablets and smartphones.

Virgin Mobile launched the world’s first virtual mobile network and offers fantastic value and innovative services with 4G connectivity. We are also one of the largest fixed-line home phone providers in the UK and Ireland.

Through Virgin Media Business we support entrepreneurs, businesses and the public sector, delivering the fastest widely available broadband speeds and tailor-made services.

Virgin Media is part of Liberty Global, the world’s largest international TV and broadband company. Liberty Global connects 21 million customers through operations in 10 countries across Europe subscribing to 45 million TV, broadband internet and telephony services. It also serves 6 million mobile subscribers and offers WiFi service through 12 million access points across its footprint.