RTL 7 is a Dutch free-to-cable television channel that was launched as Veronica on 1 September 1995. RTL 7 is RTL Nederland's "men's channel" with action films, reality television about crime and professions, soccer, motorsport and talk shows about sports. During daytime business and financial news channel RTL Z was broadcasting on RTL 7 till RTL Nederland revamped RTL Z into a 24-hours channel on 7 September 2015.
|Picture format||1080i HDTV|
(downscaled to 16:9 576i for the SDTV feed)
|Sister channels||RTL 4|
|Launched||1 September 1995|
|Former names||Veronica (1995-2001)|
|Digitenne||Channel 7 (HD)|
|DTT (Luxembourg)||498 MHz (SD)|
|Ziggo GO||ZiggoGO.tv (Europe only)|
|KPN iTV Online||Watch live (Europe only)|
Officially RTL 7 along with RTL 4, RTL 5 and RTL 8 is headquartered in Hilversum, broadcasting under a Luxembourg TV license. This allows them to avoid more severe control by the Dutch media authorities as Luxembourg's television watchdog is less strict. Yorin used to be licensed in the Netherlands, but moved to Luxembourg after the RTL 7 rebrand. There is a 40 kW DVB-T transmitter on the Dudelange Radio Tower in Luxembourg that broadcasts the channel free-to-air, but the main audience in the Netherlands needs a subscription to a cable, satellite, IPTV, or DVB-T provider to get access. All providers include the channel in their base package.
The channel began as Veronica on 1 September 1995, and was a joint venture between RTL 4, RTL 5 and Veronica Association (in Dutch: Vereniging Veronica), and with the radio station Hitradio Veronica in the Holland Media Groep.
In the first year it broadcasts a lot of American TV series, such as Beverly Hills, 90210, Melrose Place and Baywatch, films, Dutch programmes ranging from game shows to talk shows and Dutch TV series, such as Flodder and Onderweg naar Morgen. By the end of its first year Veronica dropped the news-related programmes and established its place in the Dutch television market as a young adult channel with programmes of a provocative nature. In the next years Veronica proved to be a pioneer in television making by introducing a wide range of reality shows with a real breakthrough when it launched the reality game show Big Brother in 1999.
RTL had to change the name of the station. At first RTL came up with ME but a fashion label in the Netherlands WE complained about the similarity with its name. Finally RTL rebranded Veronica to Yorin on 2 April 2001. Yorin referred to the English phrase "You're in". The Dutch version of The Price is Right, Cash en Carlo, referenced this fact when announcer Eddy Keur told contestants "Yorin the game!" when they came on down to Contestant's Row. All programmes previously on Veronica and also the television presenters moved to Yorin. RTL didn't want to add RTL into the name so the channel would keep its own identity.
In the auctioning off of FM radio frequencies called ZeroBase, Holland Media Group acquired a lot allowing them to broadcast a popular music station virtually nationwide; this station was called Yorin FM with its most notable DJs being Rob Stenders, Robert Jensen and Henk Westbroek. In 2006, due to disappointing results, Holland Media Group sold the station to SBS Broadcasting, who rebranded it Caz! and changed the programming to a fully middle-of-the-road all-music formula.
When Dutch media tycoon and Big Brother-inventor John de Mol announced the launch of a TV channel named Talpa, and contracted many popular Dutch TV hosts, the RTL Group felt the need to reorganize its channels. Apart from a physical renewal, the setup of its channels RTL 4, RTL 5 and Yorin were changed. To emphasize the three channels' connection, the name Yorin was replaced by RTL 7 on 12 August 2005. Practically all former Yorin shows were moved to RTL 5, whereas that RTL 5's programmes continued on RTL 7. RTL Z also moved from RTL 5 to RTL 7.
The origin of the number 7, instead of a more logical 6, goes back to 1995 when the original channel Veronica was founded. Around the same time, the commercial channels SBS 6 and TMF appeared and also claimed channel 6 on the remote control. Veronica and TMF lost the battle for remote control button 6. Also, SBS 6 was originally managed by Fons van Westerloo, who later became head of RTL Nederland before the rebranding operation.
RTL 7 broadcasts a large number of sports programmes such as football, darts and motorsports, but in which motorsports is their main broadcast item. This include live coverage of Formula One and the MotoGP as the most notable. But also the A1 Grand Prix, Dakar Rally and the Indianapolis 500 are broadcast live on RTL 7. Movies, series and entertainment programmings also broadcast on this channel.
RTL 7 offered a teletext service which stopped on 1 April 2017. The pages 888/889 are still available for subtitles.