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Arte (//; Association relative à la télévision européenne, sometimes stylized in lowercase or uppercase in its logo) is a European public service channel that promotes cultural programming.
It is made up of three separate companies: the Strasbourg-based European Economic Interest Grouping ARTE GEIE, plus two member companies acting as editorial and programme production centres, ARTE France in Paris (France) and ARTE Deutschland in Baden-Baden (Germany). As an international joint venture (an EEIG), its programmes focuses to audiences in both countries. Due to this, the channel features two audio tracks and two subtitle tracks, each in French and German.
80% of ARTE's programming is provided by its French and German subsidiaries, each making half of the programmes available, while the remainder is being provided by the European subsidiary and the channel's European partners.
ARTE France was formerly known as La Sept. ARTE Deutschland TV GmbH is a subsidiary of the two main public German TV networks ARD and ZDF.
Selected programmes are available with English, Spanish, Polish and Italian subtitles online.
ARTE began transmission in 1992, filling frequencies left unused by the demise of La Cinq, the first French commercial television network (created in 1986). The opening night on 30 May 1992 was broadcast live from the Strasbourg Opera House.
ARTE started out as an evening-only service. In the daytime, the frequencies were shared with other channels. A public channel called Télé emploi occupied the French frequencies for about a month during 1994, before the start of La Cinquième (now France 5) in December that year. For German viewers, ARTE was assigned a frequency on the Astra 1D satellite in late 1994, and it was eventually shared with Nickelodeon Germany, later replaced by the new public children's channel Kinderkanal.
In 1996, it started offering an afternoon schedule with reruns for viewers on digital satellite and digital cable. A "proper" afternoon schedule with programmes between 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. was introduced on 6 January 2001. The channel eventually got its own analogue frequency on the Astra satellites.
Since 2005 ARTE broadcasts 24/7. In 2007 the catch-up service ARTE+7 is launched, offering internet users free access to a broad range of programs within seven days of their original transmission.
ARTE programmes are available with multi-channel audio: all programmes go out in French and in German. Furthermore the original version is screened whenever possible with subtitles in French and German and the hearing or visually impaired may get subtitles or an audio description. Since 2015 a selection of programmes are available with English and Spanish subtitles online, with Polish to follow in late 2016.
The channel enjoys a major footprint in Europe. Both the German and the French version can be received in nearly whole Europe via the satellite Astra1 (19, 2° East), the French version is also available via Hot Bird (13° East). In addition ARTE is relayed not only by all cable networks in Germany and France, but by numerous cable networks in Austria, Belgium, Finland, Luxembourg, Switzerland, and in the Netherlands too.
Since 2008 ARTE broadcasts in HD in Germany and in France. Like the national channels of its own respective countries, the German HDTVversion of ARTE broadcasts in 720p50, while the French one broadcasts in 1080i25. In April 2016 ARTE co-produced (with Astra satellite owner, SES) a live Ultra-high-definition television broadcast of the Le Corsaire ballet from the Vienna State Opera. The programme was transmitted free-to-air on the UHD1 demonstration channel from the Astra 19.2°E satellites.
Online ARTE programmes can be streamed live or watched on catch-up TV for at least 7 and up to 700 days on ARTE+7 and the theme platforms ARTE Concert, Creative, Info, Future or Cinema.
In Africa, ARTE is broadcast via satellite, cable, MMDS and ADSL in many other countries, via the digital service CanalSat Horizons. Many French-language ARTE programs are also broadcast in Canada on the Ici ARTV cable channel, partly owned by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (85%) and ARTE itself (15%). The Australian Special Broadcasting Service translates many ARTE programs into English for broadcast on its own television network and overseas.
ARTE usually has more viewers in France than in Germany. In 2015, its share of overall viewing was about 2.2% in France and about 1% in Germany. The differences can be put down to the different television markets in both countries. In France, ARTE was for a long time available to almost everyone as one of six analogue terrestrial channels. Relatively few French households received cable and satellite television, and the other terrestrial channels did not really compete with ARTE. Meanwhile, thanks to widespread roll-out of cable television, the vast majority of German households had access to about three dozen channels, including several from the public broadcasters with content similar to Arte. After the introduction of digital terrestrial television in France, ARTE's market share has fallen there, while it has been more or less flat in Germany.
Since May 2017, the whole of ARTE’s digital offering (former known as "Arte galaxy" with several platforms) has been located on a single website. Programmes can be live streamed on the website as well as on smartphones and tablets using the ARTE application. Programmes can be viewed online before their broadcast on the channel and for a period of at least seven days afterwards (formerly known as catch-up service ARTE+7), as the case may be.
Arte Live logo
Arte Info logo
Arte Future logo
Arte CREATIVE logo
Arte Concert logo
Arte Cinema logo
Since November 2015 ARTE offers selected programmes online with subtitles in English and Spanish, since November 2016 in Polish and since October 2018 in Italian. The free offer is a project that ARTE is running with financial support from the European Union.
Arte's second and current logo since January 2, 1995.
Alternate version of the 1995 logo, used from January 3, 2004 until February 27, 2011.
Orange version of the 1995 logo, used from February 28, 2011 until March 24, 2017.
HD logo, used since June 10, 2010.
90° rotated version of the 1995 logo, used since March 25, 2017.