O2 customers will soon get to see new Channel 4 TV shows like "Peep Show" and "Made in Chelsea" two days before anyone else. The channel's online catch-up and on-demand service 4OD is relaunching as All 4, and in the process a deal with O2 gives the network's customers a 48-hour headstart on new content.
Launched in 2006, 4OD has been serving up a vast range of Channel 4's new and classic TV shows for nearly a decade. It will be replaced by All 4 on Monday 30 March, when the website and your current 4OD app will update to the new branding.
At first the new features will work online on your PC and on Apple iOS devices -- the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch -- and will expand to other digital platforms during 2015. The existing 4OD app for Android devices will continue to work as it does currently without the new features, but with the new All 4 logo on the top.
The O2 sponsorship deal is part of O2 Priority, the scheme that gives O2 customers early access to gig tickets and other perks. Ten new Channel 4 shows will be included in the deal, including new episodes of "Fresh Meat", "Made in Chelsea" and "Peep Show". That deal is expected to last until the end of the year.
The new service is built around three sections: classic shows of yesteryear such as "Shameless" and "Father Ted" are available in the On Demand section; programmes that are currently airing are shown in Now; and stuff that hasn't been released yet are previewed in On Soon.
The new On Demand section will continue 4OD's laudable back catalogue, which in many cases includes every episode of classic past shows. Episodes will now be integrated with related information such as cast interviews and galleries.
In the Now section you will be able to watch live broadcasts from all Channel 4's channels, and get involved with other related fun stuff like news clips, short videos and social media shenanigans.
On Soon will preview clips and promos for forthcoming shows, with the option to set reminders and alerts for the ones you fancy watching. It's also the place for episodes premiering before they're shown on TV.
New online shorts will also premiere on All 4. That includes "Drones in Forbidden Zones", a series of 3-minute episodes featuring drones flying around interesting locations like power stations and derelict theme parks.