|Launched||March 29, 1998|
|Owned by||BBC Worldwide
(Both owning 50%)
|Picture format||1080i (HDTV)
|Headquarters||New York City|
|Sister channel(s)||Discovery Networks
BBC World News
|Dish Network||135 (HD/SD)|
|C-Band—H2H/4DTV||AMC 18—Channel 202|
|Available on many cable systems||Check local listings for channels|
|AT&T U-verse||122 (SD)
|Verizon FiOS||689 (HD)
BBC America is an American television network, owned and operated by BBC Worldwide, and available on both cable and satellite. Unlike the BBC's wholly owned domestic channels which are principally funded by a television licence fee, BBC America is a commercial station and as such carries advertising messages.
As of August 2013, approximately 80,066,000 American households (70.11% of households with television) receive BBC America.
In the early days, the channel focused on repeats of popular lifestyle shows such as Changing Rooms and Ground Force. BBC America's head of television programming later stated that it was important for the channel to establish a niche since non-UK viewers found the lifestyle shows appealing. The evening schedule is where most new programming would appear.
The network removed the popular British soap opera EastEnders from the schedules in 2003 after low ratings, but the cancellation provoked complaints from viewers, which caught the attention of the media.
After CEO Paul Lee moved to ABC Family, the network appointed Bill Hilary from Comedy Central. He appointed Kathryn Mitchell to the newly created position of GM. Under Hilary's tenure, BBC America was restructured; it moved its main offices to New York City and saw its programming budget increase substantially.
The channel was led by Garth Ancier, who was the president of BBC Worldwide Americas from February 2007 until 2010, when he was succeeded by former MTV Networks executive Herb Scannell. Meanwhile, Perry Simon serves as general manager.
Distribution and availability
BBC America is distributed in association with Discovery Networks, the United States division of Discovery Communications and parent company of the Discovery Channel, which also handled affiliate and advertising sales until this moved in-house on April 1, 2008.
The network is not subject to funding from the UK licence fee by law: the BBC cannot fund any of its channels that are not available in the United Kingdom. As this is the case, the channel carries advertisements.
Outside the US
BBC America is available in Bermuda on both Bermuda CableVision's digital cable TV service, and the WOW (World on Wireless) service, as well as in Barbados on Multi-Choice TV's wireless service., Cayman Islands on Weststar TV,Grenada on Flow Digital Cable, and Sint Maarten on SXM Cable & Data. It is also available in the US Pacific territory of Guam on MCV Broadband cable service and GTA Teleguam's IPTV service, the only territory outside North America where the channel is available.
As of Q2 2008, select BBC America Shows are available on Apple's iTunes Store.
As of June 2009, select BBC America shows are available on Microsoft's Zune Marketplace.
BBC America HD
BBC America HD, a 1080i high definition simulcast version of BBC America, is carried nationally by Dish Network, DirecTV, and regionally on Xfinity (Comcast), Charter Communications, Cablevision, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications, Verizon FIOS  and some smaller providers. As of October 24, 2013, AT&T U-verse began carrying BBC America in HD.
The following is a list of some of the current programming that is currently airing on the channel. While many of the shows were produced by the BBC, some of the shows were produced by other British networks. There are also some re-runs of American programming.
Most of the non-news programming is edited either for adult content or to allow for commercials. However, occasionally comedy shows run in specially formatted 40-minute blocks and a few first run drama programs in a longer block that allow them to run to their original broadcast length, though adult content can be edited.
In the mid-2000s, BBC America produced a few of its own shows along with some joint productions. This has included Sharpe's Challenge, part of the Sharpe series of TV movies and co-produced with ITV; also The State Within and Jekyll which were co-productions with the BBC. Its first sole-produced original series is Copper which premiered in the summer of 2012.
The weekday morning (6:00–9:00 am ET) simulcast which included BBC World News newscasts, World Business Report, Sport Today, Asia Today and a one-hour newscast called World News Today, was canceled for a brief period without any announcement on April 6, 2009. The weekend morning (6:00–6:30 am ET) simulcast was also abruptly canceled on April 4, 2009. According to BBC America the simulcast was canceled because of disappointing ratings. BBC World News was replaced in its morning time slot by re-runs of Cash in The Attic and Gordon Ramsay's F Word. The morning simulcast returned on May 18, 2009 and now airs from 4:00–8:00 am on weekdays. The weekday morning simulcast now includes BBC World News newscasts, World Business Report, Sport Today, and GMT with George Alagiah.
From 2007 to 2011, BBC America aired BBC World News America, presented live from Washington by Matt Frei. Katty Kay served as Washington correspondent. On February 18, 2011, it was announced that BBC World News America would be discontinued on BBC America and would instead be airing only on BBC World and local PBS stations in the United States.
The network was in discussions to unveil a weekly news program fronted by Newsnight host Jeremy Paxman. He was to introduce a synopsis of Newsnight items with an international aspect and was expected to bring his brash interviewing style to bear on American politicians. "Jeremy Paxman is the sort of person that Americans will just eat up," Garth Ancier told the Financial Times. An international edition of Newsnight debuted on February 29, 2008, in the 10 pm time slot. This program was canceled in November 2008, but the cancellation was not announced until April 2009.
During major breaking news situations, the network will sometimes take BBC World News's coverage and pre-empt regular programming. The London Bombings in July 2005 were one such example. However, BBC World News itself is not currently widely available in the US as a separate channel (although it does appear on several cable systems throughout the United States, generally in lieu of BBC America; one previous example is the New York based service Cablevision which until August 2011, did not carry BBC America) or in a 30-minute telecast on public television stations daily.
- Seidman, Robert (August 23, 2013). "List of How Many Homes Each Cable Networks Is In - Cable Network Coverage Estimates As Of August 2013". TV by the Numbers. Zap2it. Retrieved August 25, 2013.
- BBC America Press - Corporate
- BBC NEWS | Entertainment | TV and Radio | EastEnders returns to US screens
- BBC AMERICA; Alas, 'East Enders' - New York Times
- Arts, Briefly; A Reprieve for 'EastEnders' - New York Times
- "Home - BBC America Press". Press.bbcamerica.com. Retrieved 2011-12-17.
- BBC America - Frequently Asked Questions
- Welcome To Bermuda CableVision
- WOW :: World On Wireless - Bermuda
- Multi-Choice TV
- Weststar TV
- Flow Digital
- MCV Broadband Guam: High-Definition Television
- Guam Cable TV vs GUdTV - Schedules and Channel line up - GTA Teleguam
- List of DISH HD Programming
- On August 15 four exciting channels will be available in eye-popping HD! DirecTV press release, August 15, 2012
- BBC America HD Launches in NYC on TWC
- Verizon Adds BBC AMERICA HD to FiOS TV Lineup
- Press, Joy (2012-01-04). "BBC America gives details about its first original drama, 'Copper'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2012-01-17.
- http://www.bbcamerica.com/schedule/ BBC America television schedule
- BBC America drops BBC World
- "'BBC World News America' Shifts To BBC World News - 2011-02-18 20:13:35 | Multichannel News". Multichannel.com. Retrieved 2011-12-17.
- BBC America website
- BBC America on Facebook
- BBC America on Google+
- @BBCAMERICA on Twitter
- Anglophenia—BBC America's blog