ABC TV (Australian TV channel)

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ABC TV logo 2021.svg
Broadcast areaNationally
NetworkABC Television
HeadquartersSydney, New South Wales
Picture format1080i HDTV
(available on ABC TV HD only; downscaled to 576i for the SDTV feed)
OwnerAustralian Broadcasting Corporation
Sister channelsABC TV Plus
ABC Kids
ABC News
Launched5 November 1956; 64 years ago (1956-11-05) (Predecessor - Sydney only)
Former namesABC National Television Service/ABC National Television/ABC-TV
(5 November 1956 – 8 February 2008)
(8 February 2008 – 20 July 2014)
WebsiteABC TV
ABN Sydney (DVB-T)545/547/673/675 @ 12 (226.5 MHz)[1]
ABV Melbourne (DVB-T)561/563/689/691 @ 12 (226.5 MHz)
ABQ Brisbane (DVB-T)577/579/705/707 @ 12 (226.5 MHz)
ABS Adelaide (DVB-T)593 @ 12 (226.5 MHz)
ABW Perth/Mandurah (DVB-T)737 @ 12 (226.5 MHz)
ABT Hobart (DVB-T)625 @ 8 (191.5 MHz)
ABD Darwin (DVB-T)641 @ 30 (543.5 MHz)
Freeview ABC (virtual)2/20/21
Foxtel/Optus (virtual)102
TransACT (virtual)2
Foxtel (virtual)102
VAST (virtual)2
Streaming media
ABCABC TV live stream on iview

ABC TV, formerly known as ABC1, is an Australian public television channel, broadcast nationally. It is the flagship channel/network of the ABC Television run by Australia's public broadcaster, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC). The headquarters of ABC TV channel and the ABC are in Ultimo, an inner-city suburb of Sydney, New South Wales.

The inception of the network in 1956 began with a single station in Sydney, with other stations and channels established across the regions and state capitals. In the 1960s and 1970s its slogans referred to ABC National Television Service, ABC National Television, or just ABC Television. There was only one channel in the network until 2001, when digital television channels were introduced. On 8 February 2008 the national channel was renamed ABC1, before being rebranded as ABC TV on 20 July 2014.



In 1953 the Television Act was passed, providing the initial regulatory framework for both ABC Television and commercial television networks under the ABC.[2][3] The ABC's 1956 Annual Report stated that it aimed to create a “television service as truly national in character as its resources will permit”.[4]

The first ABC station was launched in Sydney, ABN-2, followed by Melbourne's ABV-2 in Melbourne, in time to cover the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne, with the first television broadcast was inaugurated by prime minister Robert Menzies on 5 November 1956 at the Gore Hill studios in Sydney, followed two weeks later by transmission in Melbourne.[2][3] A purpose-built television studio opened in Sydney on 29 January 1958, replacing the temporary sound studios used the service's inception. In the same year, technical equipment was also moved to permanent locations, while main transmitters were introduced to Melbourne and Sydney in 1957 and 1958 respectively.[5] Services had expanded to all of the other states by the end of June 1960.[2]

1960s to the 1990s[edit]

Direct television relays between Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra were established in 1961, and in 1963, using microwave transmission as a temporary measure, television programs from Adelaide were viewed simultaneously across the four eastern capitals.[3][6] Videotape equipment, allowing the sharing of footage with much greater ease and speed, was installed in each state capital by 1962.[2]

Teletext services were introduced to the television service in 1983 to allow hearing impaired viewers access to closed captions.[7] Nationwide, successor to This Day Tonight, was replaced in turn by a new, hour-long, national news programme called The National. Having proved unsuccessful,[7][8] it reverted to a state ABC News bulletin at 7:00 pm, with a state-based edition of The 7.30 Report following afterwards. Lateline and Media Watch also launched in the 1980s.[7][9]


In 2001 a new logo was launched, featuring a modification to a three-dimensional metallic design, to celebrate the introduction of digital terrestrial television in Australia, when digital television was introduced to most of the network's coverage area on 1 January 2001, soon followed by the gradual introduction of widescreen and high definition programming.[10] On 1 August 2001 on channel 21, ABC Kids was launched, becoming the first digital multi-channel service,[11] with Fly TV following soon afterwards, but both had limited availability, and were closed in a round of funding cuts in 2003.[12]

2005–2008: Change of status and rebranding[edit]

On 7 March 2005 a new digital channel called ABC2 (now ABC TV Plus) was launched, according to then Director of ABC New Media and Digital Services Lynley Marshall, "like the 'younger sibling' of ABC main channel", running on a very low budget. A large amount of its schedule was dedicated to regional issues, with programmes such as Australia Wide, Landline and Stateline.[13]

At midday on 8 February 2008 ABC TV was re-branded as ABC1, with the standard-definition redirect channel moved from LCN22 to LCN2.[14] Further cementing the change in identity was the change from the slogan There's more to television to It begins with 1. After concerns in some sections of the media that the 43-year-old Lissajous curve brand was to disappear completely, ABC management reaffirmed that it would remain in use by the corporation.[15][16][17]

2011–2014: Rebranding and renaming[edit]

On 6 February 2011, ABC1 launched its new branding via idents featuring a range of channel personalities, including the face of the channel Adam Hills, with the new tagline "ThinkEntertainment". A new watermark is also aired with a single "1" above the network's famous Lissajous curve logo.

On 10 December 2013, ABC stopped broadcasting on analogue TV and is now only available through digital TV or digital set-top box.[citation needed]

On 20 July 2014, ABC1 changed its name back to just "ABC TV" and at the same time, they introduced new idents featuring the 1975 Lissajous curve logo being drawn by itself of videos of people doing activities (taken from ABC Open's video library). Then, the words "It's (Insert Words Here)'s ABC" (the words change depending on the ident) fade in on the left side of the logo. The words then change to "#OurABC", which is the network's new slogan. In 2018, these idents were updated. The "#OurABC" slogan at the end of each ident was changed to "Yours".[18]

The 1975 ABC logo was reinstated in February 2019.[citation needed]


ABC is required by charter to meet certain programming obligations. Although it has a strong focus on news and current affairs, it also presents documentaries and educational programmes, drama, light entertainment comedy and variety, and sports.

News, Analysis & Investigations[edit]

ABC News, broadcast on ABC, is a national news service produced by the News, Analysis & Investigations division of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.[19]

A number of bulletins and updates are shown throughout the day, which include the flagship state-based evening bulletins of ABC News at 7.00 pm, focused on local, national and international news relevant to their entire respective state or territory. In addition, News Breakfast is broadcast each morning and it is also shown on the ABC News channel, ABC News at Noon, a national edition of ABC News, is broadcast at noon live from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's studios in Ultimo, Sydney. News updates are presented nationally only on both the ABC News channel and ABC throughout the day; however evening updates are shown in most states by their respective presenters.[citation needed]

Other flagship programmes, which include the weeknightly 7.30 and the weekly Four Corners, Australian Story and Foreign Correspondent, are broadcast in prime-time. Landline, Insiders, Offsiders, Media Watch cover rural, political and business, sport and media affairs respectively.


ABC Television, Radio, News and Online cover many sports.[20]

ABC TV was the first broadcaster of the W-League (soccer), a partnership that remained from 2008 to 2017. From October 2019 for the first time, ABC Television was the official free-to-air partner of the A-League, as well as returning to the W-League, in a deal which included the Socceroos and Matildas and lasted for two years. ABC TV broadcast one A-League game a weekend live, and has had the right to broadcast delayed coverage of some finals matches and the Grand Final. The deal included 14 rounds of the W-League's 2019/20 Season and the whole W-League 2020 Finals Series, and many games played by the Socceroos and Matildas.[21] However, from August 2021, both the A-League and W-League begin a five-year deal with ViacomCBS giving broadcast rights to Network 10.[22]

ABC HD[edit]

ABC HD logo

The ABC HD multi-channel was launched on 1 January 2008. The service provided a 720p simulcast of ABN Sydney nationwide. The channel was closed on 22 July 2010 and its HD channel space was re-purposed for the ABC News channel. ABC HD was relaunched on 6 December 2016 as a simulcast of ABC, localised to each state, reducing the news channel to SD.

ABC iview[edit]

Most ABC TV programmes are also available on demand via ABC iview, a video-on-demand and catch-up TV service which became available on 24 July 2008.

Logo history[edit]

In the early years, ABC TV had been using Lissajous curves with its initials, ABC TV, inside it as fillers in-between programmes.[3][23] A staff competition was conducted in July 1963 to create a new logo for the whole of the ABC.[3][24] Bill Kennard, who was senior graphic designer at the ABC, came up with the winning design.[25][26] On 1 May 1964, the logo was officially adopted by the ABC.[27]

The basic logo has been adapted and modified several times over the years,[24] for its flagship television channel as well as other channels introduced in the 2000s, radio, ABC Online, ABC iview and other corporate products and equipment.

ABC1/ABC TV branding[edit]

  • On 3 February 2008, when the channel was renamed as ABC1, with its logo was updated using a blue colour theme, while the new channel, ABC2, used a yellow theme.[14][28] In addition to this, the slogan There's more to Television was rebadged to It begins with 1.[28] After concerns in some sections of the media that the 43-year-old Lissajous curve logo was to disappear completely, ABC management reaffirmed that it would remain in use by the corporation.[15][16]
  • On 14 February 2011, the channel was rebranded with new idents and a new on-air logo, with a new slogan "Think Entertainment".[citation needed]
  • On 20 July 2014, ABC1 was renamed ABC TV, with a new on-air presentation, restoring the 1975 Lissajous curve logo with a new slogan "#ourABC", and with different gradient colours.[citation needed]
  • On 4 February 2019, ABC TV was re-branded with a new on-air presentation, which included the Lissajous curve.[citation needed]




  • 1965-1970s: Australian Broadcasting Commission, National Television Service.
  • 1971: This is National Television ABC. (based on "A Shade of Brass")
  • 1972: This is ABC Television, The Good Looking Australian. (based on "A Shade of Brass")
  • 1972–1973: Around Australia, You're in Tune with the National Network – ABC Television.
  • 1974: This is ABC National Television.
  • Christmas 1974: Wishing You a Merry Christmas From ABC National Television.
  • 1975 (Jan–Feb): Come on Home to ABC.
  • 1975: Come to Colour on ABC National Television.
  • 1977: You're at Home with ABC.
  • 1978–82: ABC-TV.
  • Summer 1980/81: Summer '80.
  • Summer 1981/82: ABC Summer.
  • 1982–83: ABC – Your National Network.
  • 1982: The Games Station.
  • 1985–94: You're Watching ABC, Your Australian Network.
  • 1986: This is ABC Television, Coming to You via Domestic Satellite Throughout Australia.
  • 1988–96: Natural Textures of Australia.
  • 1990–95: Man-Made Textures.
  • 1992: 8 Cents a Day.
  • 1993–2000: It's Your ABC.
  • 1994: Seeing is Believing on Your ABC.
  • 1 January 1999 – January 2002: You're Watching ABC, Your Australian Network – First in Australia.
  • 2002–2005: Everyone's ABC.
  • 2005–2008: There's More to Television.
  • 2008–2011: It Begins with 1.
  • Summer 2010/11: Colour Your Summer with ABC.
  • 2011–2014: Think Entertainment.
  • Summer 2011/12: Happy Summer.
  • 20 July 2014 – 31 December 2017: #ourABC.
  • 31 December 2017 – present: Yours.
  • December 2016 – present: ABC: Original. (secondary slogan)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "[Technical parameters of Australian Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcasts]" (PDF). Australian Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcasting Service Information Register. Free TV Australia (5). 17 February 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on 1 January 2017. Retrieved 10 April 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d "About the ABC – The 50s – The Postwar Years". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Archived from the original on 11 December 2012. Retrieved 1 October 2007.
  3. ^ a b c d e Brooklyn Ross-Hulands. "AusTVHistory: Australian Broadcasting Corporation 1950s–1960s". AusTVHistory. Archived from the original on 7 October 2008. Retrieved 4 October 2007.
  4. ^ Ward, Michael (2017). ABC Television Sport: Public Broadcasting, Innovation and Nation Building (PDF) (Master of Arts(Research)). QUT.
  5. ^ "Twenty-Sixth Annual report of the Australian Broadcasting Commission". 1958. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  6. ^ "About the ABC – The 60s and 70s". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Archived from the original on 6 December 2012.
  7. ^ a b c Inglis, Kenneth Stanley (2006). Whose ABC? The Australian Broadcasting Corporation 1983–2006. Melbourne, Victoria: Black Inc. ISBN 1-86395-189-X.
  8. ^ Brooklyn Ross-Hulands. "AusTVHistory: Australian Broadcasting Corporation 1970s–1980s". AusTVHistory. Retrieved 4 October 2007.
  9. ^ "About the ABC – The 80s". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Archived from the original on 8 December 2012. Retrieved 1 October 2007.
  10. ^ "Digital TV to commence on 1 January 2001". Australian Broadcasting Authority. Archived from the original on 21 September 2007. Retrieved 19 August 2007.
  11. ^ "ABC Launches Kids Channel". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 7 August 2001. Archived from the original on 8 September 2007. Retrieved 21 September 2007.
  12. ^ "ABC Closes Digital Multichannels". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 26 May 2003. Archived from the original on 31 December 2012. Retrieved 25 September 2007.
  13. ^ "ABC2 launched at Parliament House". ABC New Media & Digital Services. 11 March 2005. Archived from the original on 28 September 2007. Retrieved 31 March 2007.
  14. ^ a b "ABC promises more content choice". The Australian. 6 February 2008. Archived from the original on 7 February 2008. Retrieved 6 February 2008.
  15. ^ a b Welch, Dylan (30 January 2008). "ABC squiggle to stay". Brisbane Times. Archived from the original on 24 June 2008. Retrieved 30 January 2008.
  16. ^ a b "ABC revamps squiggle logo". ABC Online. 30 January 2008. Archived from the original on 1 February 2008. Retrieved 30 January 2008.
  17. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 18 December 2012. Retrieved 18 December 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  18. ^ Reilly, Claire (10 July 2014). "New ABC tagline embraces hashtag revolution". CNET. Archived from the original on 14 July 2014. Retrieved 13 July 2014.
  19. ^ Australian Broadcasting Corporation (2016). "Organisational Structure". Annual Report 2020 (Report).
  20. ^ "Sport". ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation). 25 June 2018. Retrieved 15 June 2021.
  21. ^ "ABC TV becomes Free-to-Air Broadcast Partner of the Hyundai A-League". A-League. 3 October 2019.
  22. ^ "A-League announces Channel 10 as new broadcast partner in five-year deal". ABC News (Australia). 26 May 2021. Retrieved 28 May 2021.
  23. ^ "The ABC's of Lissajous figures". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 3 July 2021.
  24. ^ a b "IP in everyday life: Australian Broadcasting Corporation - ABC". IP Australia. Australian Government. Retrieved 3 July 2021.
  25. ^ "Bill Kennard". Re:collection. Retrieved 3 July 2021.
  26. ^ "ABC History". About the ABC. 8 February 2012. Retrieved 3 July 2021.
  27. ^ "Chronology 1960s on ASO". Australian Screen. National Film and Sound Archive. 19 August 1961. Retrieved 3 July 2021.
  28. ^ a b "It begins with 1". TV Tonight. 26 January 2008. Archived from the original on 29 January 2008. Retrieved 29 January 2008.

External links[edit]