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Last Updated: Friday, 24 June, 2005, 13:51 GMT 14:51 UK
ITV to launch channel 'for men'
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ITV4 will join ITV2,3 and the news channel on digital
Proposed digital television channel ITV4 is to broadcast programming aimed at men, the network has confirmed.

The service will complement the female demographic of ITV2 and the older audience of ITV3.

ITV network chief Mick Desmond told Broadcast magazine a 15m budget has been set aside for the ITV, although a launch date has not been decided.

In April, ITV won an auction for a spare slot on the digital television platform Freeview.

Fourth presence

Mr Desmond also told the weekly publication the service will "compete head to head with channels using a high proportion of US acquisitions like Sky One, Channel 4 and Five".

But a spokeswoman for ITV said no details about the type of programming which will be shown on the station were available yet.

ITV4 will become the broadcaster's fourth presence on digital, alongside ITV2, 3 and the ITV News channel.

ITV2 has hosted extra coverage from reality shows Celebrity Love Island and Celebrity Fit Club, spin-offs from dramas such as Footballers' Wives and soap omnibuses.

ITV3, which launched last November, features films and re-runs from dramas such as Miss Marple, the Chancer and Inspector Morse. It is aimed at an over-35 audience.

ITV recently shelved Celebrity Wrestling, Fat Families and The Real Good Life in response to declining ratings, but Celebrity Love Island gained more viewers than Channel 4 reality rival Big Brother on several occasions.

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