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BBC announces BBC Two HD, but axes BBC HD Channel

The BBC has announced the launch of BBC Two HD, a high definition version of its standard definition BBC Two channel, confirming the launch for 6AM on the 26th of March.

The new channel will be a simulcast of the current BBC Two schedule, with new programs being made available in high definition for the first time. Paul Hollywood – Bread, The Fall, Science Britannica and Keeping Britain Alive were all mentioned, and current popular shows such as Mock The Week, QI and Springwatch are expected to make a return.

To launch BBC Two HD, the BBC will be retiring the existing BBC HD channel. Launching in 2007, the BBC HD Channel has become the go-to channel to watch high definition programmes usually aired in SD on BBC Three and BBC Four. With its closure, it's unclear whether viewers will have to log on to the BBC iPlayer to continue watching in HD or will simply have to put up with standard definition broadcasts.

"BBC One HD has already proved to be highly valued by our audiences and I’m delighted that we’re able to follow this with the launch of BBC Two in HD" Janice Hadlow, the Controller of BBC Two, said of the announcement. "The launch of BBC Two HD will allow us to showcase more of our programmes at their very best".

BBC Two HD will launch at 6am on Tuesday 26 March, on Sky HD (169), Freeview HD/YouView (102), Virgin Media (187), Freesat HD (109) and BT Vision (852).

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