Toku (TV network)

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Toku
TOKU channel logo.png
Launched29 September 2005
Owned byOlympusat
Picture format1080i HDTV
(downscaled to letterboxed 480i for the SDTV feed)
SloganLive the action
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Broadcast areaUnited States
Canada
HeadquartersWest Palm Beach, Florida
Formerly calledFunimation Channel (2005–2015)
Branding licensed from Funimation[1]
Websitetokuhd.com
Availability
Cable
Available on most cable systemsChannel slots vary on each provider
IPTV
AT&T U-verseChannel 1484 (HD)
Claro (Puerto Rico)Channel 1120 (HD)
Frontier FiOSChannel 262 (HD)
Streaming media
Amazon Videowww.amazon.com
go90www.go90.com

Toku (stylized as TOKU) is an American pay television network dedicated to broadcast anime and Asian live-action programming.[2] It is owned by Olympusat.

Formerly known as Funimation Channel, it adopted its current name on 31 December 2015, after Funimation ended their partnership with Olympusat. As such, Toku has not aired any Funimation titles since 1 January 2016. Tristan Leostar is the content aggregator for the Toku network.

History[edit]

As Funimation Channel[edit]

Logo as Funimation Channel

Funimation Channel started out as a syndicated block on Colours TV, one of OlympuSAT’s affiliate networks.[3] Programs during this era were Dragon Ball, Negima!, Kodocha, The Slayers, Blue Gender, Kiddy Grade, Fruits Basket, Case Closed and Yu Yu Hakusho. The block was later discontinued in favor for a more successful expansion on subscription television.

On 1 May 2008, Funimation Channel became a 24-hour English-dubbed anime subscription network; the second of its kind in North America (following A.D. Vision's Anime Network).[4] Olympusat was chosen as the exclusive distributor of Funimation Channel.[5] The service originally was available to a few cities via digital terrestrial television and was temporary-only as the channel was trying to gain a foothold in the already-crowded pay television landscape.

In May 2009, Funimation Channel continued its expansion on subscription providers launching on Comcast's VOD platform [6] and offering two services - Free on demand and PPV on demand. The PPV VOD offers viewers a chance to watch titles prior to their DVD release.[7] Movies and packaged specials were available at US$3.00 each while episodes are available at US$1.00 each.

As of 27 September 2010, Funimation launched an HD feed alongside existing VOD services.[8] On 16 February 2012, Verizon announced that it will drop Funimation Channel and Bridges TV from its Verizon FiOS service "on, or after 15 March" due to "very low viewership".[9] In response to reaction from its customers, Verizon returned Funimation Channel via VOD.[10] Channel 262 remains on the FiOS system operated by Frontier Communications in some ex-Verizon territories.[11] Cablevision's Optimum TV recently launched[12] FUNimation Channel On Demand in the NY/NJ/CT Tri-State area. Adding this MSO increased FUNimation Channel's footprint to over 40 million households nationwide.

Funimation Channel's programming came from Funimation, Viz Media, Nozomi Entertainment and the now-defunct Central Park Media and Enoki Films USA.

As Toku[edit]

On 8 December 2015, it was reported that the channel would change its name to Toku on 31 December 2015 and would start broadcasting live-action, grindhouse and independent Asian movies.[13][14] It was subsequently announced, on 15 December 2015, that Funimation would end its partnership with Olympusat and relaunch Funimation Channel sometime in 2016.[15]

On 14 March 2016, Olympusat announced a localised version of Toku in Latin America, named Toku Español.[16] However, until November 2018, the channel is yet to be launched in the region.

On July 2016, it was announced that Toku was going to be launched in the FlixFling streaming service by early 2017, but to date, that never happened.[17] On 8 June 2017, it was announced that Toku is available on Amazon Channels as a streaming service for members of Amazon Prime, offering channel content on demand for US$4.00 per month, after a 7-day free trial.[18][19]

On 23 August 2017, Consolidated Communications added Toku on its channel line-up.[20]

On 22 May 2018, Toku launches a beta version of its new streaming service WatchTOKU.com for the United States and Canada, which includes channel content and future releases, as well as embedded forums. The service, powered by Vimeo, costs either US$4.00 per month or US$40.00 per year. This is Toku's official debut outside the United States, being available for the first time in Canada. [21]

Toku's programming comes from Media Blasters, Tsuburaya Productions, MonoFilm Sales and other anime and movie licensors.

Availability[edit]

The linear channel is available on AT&T U-verse,[22][23] Claro Puerto Rico, Hotwire Communications, Consolidated Communications, Sjobergs Inc., IFiber Communications and OptiLink; its HD feed was launched on 27 September 2010.[24]

The VOD service is available on Optimum,[25] Xfinity, Vubiquity, Frontier FiOS and Armstrong. [26] The VOD service was previously available on Charter Communications and Massilion.[27]

The channel is available in streaming through its WatchToku.com streaming service, as well as its Amazon Prime and Go90 channels.

Programming[edit]

Anime series[edit]

Current[edit]

Upcoming[edit]

Former[edit]

Live-action series[edit]

Upcoming[edit]

Anime films[edit]

Live-action films[edit]

OVAs[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Olympusat, Inc. Owns & Operates FUNimation Channel
  2. ^ "TV Listings & Channel Guide | AT&T U-verse". Uverse.com. Retrieved 2016-05-06.
  3. ^ "Navarres Funimation Entertainment doubles anime programming for syndicated anime block". RedOrbit. 7 September 2006. Retrieved 3 November 2010.
  4. ^ "Funimation Entertainment announces the launch of the Funimation Channel in Seattle". Mania. December 20, 2006. Archived from the original on January 23, 2015. Retrieved November 3, 2010.
  5. ^ "Navarre's Funimation Entertainment and Verizon sign distribution agreement". Navarre. 29 September 2005. Archived from the original on 17 November 2006. Retrieved 17 June 2006.
  6. ^ "Funimation anime on demand now on Comcast Nationwide". Anime News Network. 5 May 2009. Retrieved 3 November 2010.
  7. ^ "PR Newswire". Retrieved 21 April 2013.
  8. ^ "Funimation Channel goes high-definition". Anime News Network. 7 September 2010. Retrieved 3 November 2010.
  9. ^ "Verizon drops Funimation Channel from FiOS service". 16 February 2012. Retrieved 17 February 2012.
  10. ^ "Olympusat's Funimation Channel now available on Verizon FiOS TV video on demand". Retrieved 8 May 2012.
  11. ^ Frontier FiOS TV channel lineup
  12. ^ "Olympusat's FUNimation Channel Launches SVOD Package On Optimum TV". Prweb.com. 2012-12-21. Retrieved 2016-05-06.
  13. ^ "Funimation Channel changing its name". The Fandom Post. 8 December 2015. Retrieved 8 December 2015.
  14. ^ "Guides & types of programming". Retrieved 8 December 2015.
  15. ^ "Funimation Channel to relaunch in 2016". Anime News Network. 15 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  16. ^ "Toku en español: Nuevo canal llega a Latinoamérica". ANMTV. 14 March 2016. Retrieved 14 March 2016.
  17. ^ "Flixfling partners with Olympusat to launch its first ever lineup of premium Spanish-language channels". Retrieved 25 July 2016.
  18. ^ "Toku is now available for Amazon Prime members". Olympusat Inc. 8 June 2017. Retrieved 8 June 2017.
  19. ^ "Toku opens streaming channel on Amazon Prime". Anime News Network. 8 June 2017. Retrieved 8 June 2017.
  20. ^ "Okympusat's Toku launches on Consolidated Communications". Olympusat Inc. 8 September 2017. Retrieved 23 August 2017.
  21. ^ "TOKU airs Ultraman Mebius spin-offs, launches streaming website beta". Anime News Network. 24 May 2018. Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  22. ^ "Operators". Funimation Channel. 7 October 2009. Retrieved 3 November 2010.
  23. ^ "Choice Cable TV" (PDF). Retrieved 21 April 2013.
  24. ^ "Funimation Channel launches on AT&T U-verse in high-definition". Anime News Network. 30 September 2010. Retrieved 3 November 2010.
  25. ^ "Under Maintenance". Optimum.com. Retrieved 2016-05-06.
  26. ^ "Armstrong Cable - Funimation Channel". Retrieved 1 December 2011.
  27. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 5 February 2011. Retrieved 1 February 2011.

External links[edit]