AT&T has begun notifying subscribers to its linear pay TV platforms that its Audience Network will disappear from program guides on May 22.
Dan York, the longtime DirecTV programming architect who spearheaded the channel’s launch on the satellite platform in the aughts, announced in January that the Audience Network would soon “transition” into a marketing platform for AT&T’s new streaming service, HBO Max. York himself has since departed his job as chief content officer for AT&T, which swallowed DirecTV in 2015 for $50 billion.
Notably, AT&T has said the highly anticipated launch of HBO Max will occur in May, but it hasn’t specified a date.
The Audience Network’s roots date back to November 1999, when it launched as Freeview, a service on DirecTV channel 103 carrying a continuous loop of concerts and other events. In 2005, the channel was moved to 101 on the satellite operator’s guide and rebranded as the 101 Network, before assuming its current moniker in 2011.
AT&T added the Audience Network to the U-verse programming guide in 2015, when it took over DirecTV.
The fate of Audience Network original series, including Loudermilk starring Ron Livingston, remains unclear.
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