Channel 4 Launches Major Revamp, Targets Gen Z Viewers

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In a new move to capture the attention of Gen Z and younger millennials, Channel 4 has given its streaming platform a major facelift today, with a new, sleek user interface.

The overhaul comes as part of Channel 4’s ambitious “Fast Forward” strategy, which seeks to transform the broadcaster into a digital-first public service streamer by 2030.

The updated platform (previously known as All4) boasts a show-centric design, intuitive navigation, and personalized recommendations that cater to the viewing habits of younger audiences.

Of course, the question remains: will this be enough to keep Channel 4 relevant in an increasingly competitive streaming landscape?

Channel 4 streaming service on laptop

Channel 4’s Streaming-First Future

Over the past year, Channel 4 has undergone major changes to adapt to shifting viewer habits (following the branding change of the streaming platform from All4 to just Channel 4).

In December 2023, Ofcom addressed complaints about the channel’s streaming service, highlighting issues such as glitches and navigation difficulties.

It’s possible this feedback prompted Channel 4 to reassess its digital strategy, and some of today’s changes are focused on usability – though hopefully, these are not just a new coat of paint.

Channel 4 company logo
Photo: Deposit Photos / TKKurikawa

In January 2024, Channel 4 announced the closure of several linear channels, including 4MUSIC, The Box, Kiss, Magic, and Kerrang.

This decision was part of the channel’s new “Fast Forward” strategy, which aims to streamline operations and focus on enhancing its streaming service.

The strategy has already shown some positive results, with Channel 4 reporting a 22% increase in streaming viewership year-on-year in April 2024.

This growth was driven by popular shows and a robust content line-up, particularly among 16-34-year-olds.

Channel 4’s streaming service has also seen notable successes with shows like The Underdog: Josh Must Win, which attracted 101 million viewer minutes in April, and returning favourites like Married At First Sight Australia and Gogglebox, which saw significant increases in viewership.

The New

The latest refresh of introduces several updates aimed at enhancing the viewing experience – especially for younger audiences, particularly Gen Z.

According to Channel 4, the upgrades reflect Gen Z’s growing desire to watch Channel 4 on multiple screens, and, “advance Channel 4’s unique role in serving young audiences”.

Last year, nearly one million 13 to 24-year-olds streamed Channel 4 via a PC or a laptop, with such viewing up 17% year over year in 2024.

16-34s are the biggest single cohort (49%) of streamers, with Gen Z representing 20% of the accounts that viewed

The changes announced today include:

Show-Led Design: The platform now features a more show-centric design, with each page packed with widescreen video and standout imagery to make popular shows easier to find.

Channel 4 new look location location location

App-Like Experience: The streaming service has been updated to mirror the intuitive navigation expected from mobile apps, making it easier for users to browse episode grids tailored for on-the-go viewing.

Of course, the Channel 4 apps on mobile phones and tablets already looked like, well, apps – but the website now has a similar look.

Enhanced Accessibility: Improvements include better audio description, sign-language, and subtitles, as well as improved navigation to ensure an inclusive experience for all users (it’s now also easier to see which programmes have accessibility add-ons such as subtitles).

Personalised Recommendations: The platform now offers improved personalised recommendations based on viewers’ histories and Channel 4’s distinctive remit. This includes a ‘recency boost’ that prioritises shows the user recently watched.

Channel 4 the gathering

Upcoming Channel 4 Shows and Content

Channel 4 streamers can look forward to a diverse array of new and returning content in the coming months:

New Shows: The platform will feature new drama The Gathering (which is already available to stream in its entirety), comedy Queenie, documentary Merseyside Detectives (working title), and reality hit Married At First Sight.

International Hits: Channel 4 is doubling down on US classics (something ITVX has also been doing), and viewers will be able to watch American TV classics like ER and The X Files, reality shows such as Dance Moms, and new premium scripted boxsets like The Great.

The Great TV show

Exclusive Content: Upcoming releases include the second series of We Are Lady Parts, first-look episodes of Hollyoaks, and streaming exclusives like Murder of Laci Peterson and UNTOLD: The Rise and Rise of Taylor Swift.

Kiran Nataraja, Director of Streaming and Content Strategy at Channel 4, emphasized the goal of providing a distinctive and engaging viewing experience that resonates with young audiences:

“We’re also going to give audiences a more seamless, connected and accessible viewing experience across all of Channel 4’s service and platforms. These enhancements support our plan to become the first public service streamer.”

Channel 4 is available to stream on, as well as via its app, which is available on most streaming devices and TVs sold in the UK.

Channel 4 plus mockup

The channel also has a premium Channel4+ paid tier, which removes all the adverts, at £3.99/month of £39.99/year.

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