|New Britain/Hartford/New Haven, Connecticut|
|City||New Britain, Connecticut|
|Branding||NBC CT (general)|
NBC Connecticut News (newscasts)
|Channels||Digital: 35 (UHF)|
(shared with WRDM-CD; to move to 31 (UHF))
Virtual: 30 (PSIP)
(NBC Telemundo License LLC)
|First air date||February 13, 1953|
|Call letters' meaning||W-Viacom International Television|
(Former owner's official subsidiary for trademark, copyright and station licensing purposes)
|Former channel number(s)|
|Transmitter power||250 kW|
374 kW (CP)
|Height||434 m (1,424 ft)|
450 m (1,476 ft) (CP)
|Public license information:||Profile|
WVIT, virtual channel 30 (UHF digital channel 35), branded on-air as NBC Connecticut or NBC CT, is an NBC owned-and-operated television station licensed to New Britain, Connecticut, United States and serving the Hartford–New Haven television market. Owned by the NBC Owned Television Stations subsidiary of NBCUniversal, it is a sister station to Hartford-licensed Class A Telemundo owned-and-operated station WRDM-CD (channel 19). The two stations share studios on New Britain Avenue in West Hartford and transmitter facilities on Rattlesnake Mountain in Farmington, Connecticut. On cable, WVIT is carried primarily on channel 4 throughout the Hartford–New Haven television market.
Early years (1953–1977)
WVIT signed on for the first time on February 13, 1953, as WKNB-TV, owned by the New Britain Broadcasting Company along with WKNB radio (840 AM, now WRYM). The calls stood for Kensington–New Britain. It is Connecticut's second-oldest television station, and the first on the UHF band. It has been an NBC affiliate for nearly all of its history. However, during its first two and a half years, it carried CBS programming.
NBC itself purchased the WKNB stations in December 1956, and renamed channel 30 WNBC (for New Britain, Connecticut) a month later.
In September 1957, the Hartford-based Travelers Insurance Company signed on independent station WTIC-TV (channel 3, now WFSB), the state's second and last VHF station. Within a year of its debut (and despite its radio sister having been an NBC radio affiliate for over thirty years) WTIC-TV became Connecticut's CBS affiliate, replacing its owned-and-operated station, WHCT-TV (channel 18, now Univision affiliate WUVN). NBC then realized its UHF experiment was a lost cause (it had shut down its other owned UHF station in Buffalo, New York, WBUF-TV, in October 1958), and in June 1959 sold WNBC to Plains Television, a joint venture of Transcontinental Properties and H & E Balaban Corporation (WKNB radio was also included in the sale, but was spun off immediately afterward).
As part of the deal, Springfield Television, the owner of fellow NBC affiliate WWLP in Springfield, Massachusetts, was to have held a one-third stake in channel 30; it abandoned this stake before the deal's completion after concerns arose over their overlapping coverage areas, but continued to hold an option to reacquire it for some time afterward. In 1960, the calls changed again – this time to WHNB-TV (for Hartford-New Britain). This change came because NBC wanted the WNBC calls for its flagship radio and television combination in New York City.
In 1966, WHNB-TV became, once again, one of two NBC affiliates in Connecticut; the network signed with Waterbury-licensed WATR-TV (channel 20) in order to get its programming into New Haven on a strong signal. By this time, television manufacturers were now required to include all-channel tuning. Channel 30 itself made up for the shortfall in its market coverage by operating two low-power translators (starting in 1971): W79AI (channel 79) in Torrington and W59AA (channel 59) in New Haven.
Later years (1979 - present)
Plains Television sold WHNB-TV to the original Viacom in 1978, and the station's call letters were changed on July 17 to WVIT (for "Viacom International Television") to reflect its new ownership. Viacom immediately announced plans to boost WVIT's signal to cover all of the market.
On December 4, 2017, NBCUniversal announced that it would buy Telemundo affiliate WRDM-CD and its Springfield satellite station WDMR-LP from ZGS Communications, as with several other NBC O&Os, WRDM would become a sister station to WVIT, creating the third duopoly in the Hartford–New Haven television market, following the duopolies of Nexstar Media Group's WTNH/WCTX and Tribune Broadcasting's WTIC-TV/WCCT-TV (though as a low-power station, WRDM is exempt from FCC ownership caps, including the duopoly rule). ZGS had sold WRDM's spectrum in the FCC's incentive auction for $10,574,516 and indicated that the station would enter into a post-auction channel sharing agreement, which will occur with WVIT at the start of the year. The sale was officially completed on February 1, 2018.
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|30.1||1080i||16:9||WVIT-HD||Main WVIT programming / NBC|
Digital subchannel 30.2 carried NBC Weather Plus; national network operations for that service ended in December 2008. NBC Plus then aired on that subchannel. This channel utilized the same graphics as Weather Plus, with a new 'NBC Plus' logo and without the on camera meteorologist segments. WVIT was the last remaining NBC-owned station to continue to air NBC Plus. On December 20, 2012, WVIT replaced NBC Plus with Cozi TV, a new network featuring classic television series and lifestyle programming. Digital subchannel 30.3 carried Universal Sports; transition for a Digital-only broadcast network into a cable- and satellite-exclusive service was occurred on January 1, 2012 when the station deleted the subchannel along with its fellow affiliates to remove or replace the network from their digital signals. The digital subchannel was reactivated again in 2015, when WVIT added the Spanish-language digital network TeleXitos, a new network featuring classic television series dubbed in Spanish exclusively to the stations owned by Telemundo, making it the only NBC-owned station to carry the Spanish-language digital channel. Following the station's parent's official acquisition of Telemundo affiliated station WRDM-CD/WDMR-LP in February 2018, the TeleXitos affiliation was moved to the newly launched digital subchannel of WRDM-CD and WDMR-LP, with the subchannel was deleted again from their digital signal.
WVIT shut down its analog signal, over UHF channel 30, on June 12, 2009, as part of the federally mandated transition from analog to digital television. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 35, using PSIP to display WVIT's virtual channel as 30 on digital television receivers. With the transition, the height of the station's transmitter tower was increased to 434 meters (1,424 ft).
On June 16, 2017, WVIT announced that it would not air that week's edition of Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly, which featured an interview with radio host Alex Jones. The station cited viewer, advertiser and management sensitivities to the views of Jones, as he had previously expressed a denial of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings.
On June 13, 2016, WVIT became the second station in Connecticut to debut a 4:00 pm newscast. On the same day, WVIT began using Artworks' new "Look N" standardized graphics that were first adopted by sister station WNBC, also its music was changed by begin using 615 Music's "The Tower", which is first adopted in 2000 by sister stations WMAQ-TV and KNBC.
Notable former on-air staff
- Chris Berman - (now at ESPN)
- Van Hackett - (now retired from broadcasting)
- Brian Kilmeade - (now at Fox News Channel)
- Rob Marciano - (now at ABC News)
- Natalie Morales - (now host of Access and West Coast correspondent of The Today Show)
- Rob Morrison - (retired from TV; now a real estate agent)
- Beasley Reece
- Brian Shactman - (now at NECN)
- Chris Wragge - (now at WCBS-TV)
- "Hearst acquires WTVW (TV) Milwaukee; NBC buys WKNB-TV New Britain, Conn." Broadcasting - Telecasting, January 10, 1955, pg. 7. [permanent dead link]
- "NBC sells WNBC (TV) to Scheftel group." Broadcasting, June 29, 1959, pp. 73-74. [permanent dead link][permanent dead link]
- [permanent dead link]"Changing Hands." Broadcasting, September 28, 1959, pp. 98-100[permanent dead link]
- "Conn. sale protest dismissed by FCC" (PDF). Broadcasting. November 30, 1959. p. 70. Retrieved July 28, 2012.[permanent dead link]
- "For the Record." Broadcasting, May 9, 1960, pg. 100[permanent dead link]
- W59AA New Haven
- "Viacom gets into station ownership." Broadcasting, June 20, 1977, pg. 28. [permanent dead link]
- Miller, Mark K. (December 4, 2017). "NBCU Adding ZGS Stations To Telemundo". TVNewsCheck. Retrieved December 4, 2017.
- "FCC Broadcast Television Spectrum Incentive Auction Auction 1001 Winning Bids" (PDF). Federal Communications Commission. April 4, 2017. Retrieved December 15, 2017.
- "NBCU Completes ZGS Stations Buy". TVNewsCheck. February 1, 2018. Retrieved February 1, 2018.
- RabbitEars TV Query for WVIT
- List of Digital Full-Power Stations
- Otterson, Joe (2017-06-16). "Connecticut NBC Station Will Not Air Megyn Kelly's Alex Jones Interview". Variety. Retrieved 2017-06-22.
- Chris Ariens (June 16, 2017). "NBC Connecticut NBC Station Won't Air Megyn Kelly Interview with Alex Jones". TVNewser. AdWeek. Retrieved June 17, 2017.
- "4 NBC Stations to Launch Afternoon Newscast". January 4, 2016.