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ABC launches ABC MEe channel and app

Kids-logo-460_2ABC MEAustralian pubcaster the ABC will launch its new kids TV and digital service, ABC Me, at the end of the week.

The channel replaces ABC3, as previously announced, and targets 5-to-11s with local content and international kids fare.

The ABC will launch a companion app at the same time as the channel on September 16.

The app allows kids to create their own profiles and playlists and watch their favourite shows. They can also use emoticons to react to shows they have viewed. Parental controls allow parents and carers to filter content.

Head of audience and digital for ABC Television Rebecca Heap said: “This year, we’ve seen ABC3 content on [catch-up service] iview average six million program plays per month, demonstrating how quickly the habits of our young audience are changing and highlighting how important it is that we evolve our service and content to meet their needs.

“ABC Me offers them this freedom within a safe environment that parents can trust.”

The launch line-up includes existing ABC series Nowhere BoysYou’re Skitting MeGood Game SP and Behind the News.

New programming includes pop-culture review show News to Me, sci-fi action animation series Prisoner Zero, animated comedy Winston Steinburger & Sir Dudley Ding Dong, and short-form documentary seriesThis Is Me.

The ABC Me channel is free-to-air and on the Foxtel pay TV platform. The free app is for Apple and Android devices.

The launch comes in the same year former Zodiak Kids Studios chief Michael Carrington became head of children’s and education at Australia’s pubcaster, replacing the Corus Entertainment-bound Deidre Brennan.