Austrian public broadcaster Österreichische Rundfunk (ORF) will turn its thematic channel TW1 into ORF3 – Kultur und Information on May 1, according to local press reports.
Until now, TW1 has been a stand-alone thematic channel broadcasting traffic and weather reports and sometimes live sports coverage. ORF operates the channel as a commercial enterprise, indepently from the income from licence fees. However, the broadcaster has been running up losses into millions of euros a year.
ORF has now decided to integrate the channel into the public framework and extend programming with mainly information and cultural content along the lines of the German public channels Phoenix and Bayern Alpha.