On Wednesday 28 July 2021, Sky officially announced the planned retirement of the Sky One brand, in favour of two new channels, Sky Showcase on channel 106, and Sky Max on channel 113, replacing Sky One and bumping Sky Comedy down the EPG respectively. Sky Showcase would broadcast a selection of content from all of Sky's entertainment channels, and Sky Max would broadcast all of Sky's bespoke entertainment content.
Being the UK's oldest non-terrestrial television channel, the closure of Sky's flagship channel, which had been broadcasting since 1989, this closure marked a monumental event in the history of Sky, and British television as a whole.
This page will detail the complete transition from Sky One to Sky Showcase and Sky Max.
Weeks up to 01/09/21
Sky began broadcasting frequent promotions of the new services across all of their channels, including Sky One. Eventually, these promotions were broadcast at the end of most advertising breaks on the channel to inform viewers of the impeding change.
Two new channels were added to Astra 28.2E 11.914 GHz H, with service IDs 5276 and 5277. At this time, 5276 was a simulcast of the current Sky One channel at the time, 5277 was a test card. These frequencies were thought to be the earliest signs of the Sky Showcase channel on the service. All services utilised VideoGuard encryption. Later on that day, the services closed once again, informing users to 'upgrade their subscriptions'.
31/08/2021 - around 9PM
The two new services, still asking users to upgrade subscription had EIT programming information added, this being '...programmes start at 6.00am' and '...programmes start at 7.00am' respectively.
31/08/2021 - 11:00PM
This is Sky One's final continuity announcement, with the channel announcer again informing viewers that the channel will become 'Sky Max' as of tomorrow. Sky One then continues into 'Prodigal Son'. Sky One continues through the night, with idents and graphics as normal.
01/09/2021 - 05:00AM
At 5am, Sky One displays its ident for the final time, although short break bumper sections were displayed during advertising breaks. The final official programme on the channel was 'Magnum P.I.'.
01/09/2021 - 06:00AM
'Magnum P.I.' has finished, and Sky One begins another normal advertising break, starting with a Sky One break bumper as per normal. After a short Sky Cinema Top 10 presentation, Sky One was about to launch into a Sky Original production. The introduction screen played out twice, before the Sky One feed was replaced by either the Sky Max, or Showcase (unknown at this time) feed at 6am.
At the same time, service 5276 also begins, and simulcasts the new Sky Max feed. The first programme to be shown on the new feed was 'Futurama'. At this time, the feed was broadcasting with no onscreen graphics or idents. The service is still named 'Sky One' in the EPG, and '5276' still has no name.
Service 5277 broadcasts the same content, timeshifted one hour later as a +1 service.
01/09/2021 - 8:23AM
Small dot icons were appended to the top right corner of all of the former Sky One feeds, they are absent from the new services, these coming with a short signal interruption during an episode of 'Monkey Life'. These were broadcast until around 9:26am. The services are still operating with no graphics or idents. It is theorised at this point, that this was the separation of the services, and advertising now differs between them.
01/09/2021 - 9:00AM
'5276' and '5277' now have their final channel names appended, 'Sky Showcase' and 'SkyShowcase+1' respectively.
01/09/2021 - 10:00AM
Sky Max officially launches on the existing Sky One frequencies, at this time on channel 106. The service name is still broadcasting as 'Sky One' at this point. Idents and graphics are restored with Sky Max branding. The first program on Sky Max was 'Football's Funniest Moments 2021'.
Sky Showcase broadcasts a launch program of repeated promos, however, it still is not visible on the EPG.
01/09/2021 - 11AM
Sky Showcase launches into its first programme, 'The Fresh Prince of Bel Air'. Graphics and idents are restored with Sky Showcase branding. The service is still not visible on the EPG at this time.
01/09/2021 - 1PM
The planned EPG reshuffle takes place. Viewers currently watching Sky Max on 106 are seamlessly moved to 113 without interruption. The service name is also finally changed to 'Sky Max'. Sky Showcase is also finally added to the EPG in 106 as planned, completing the switch from Sky One to Sky Max/Showcase.