AT&T pulling global CNN feed from UK cable systems

(Photo by Josh Hallett/Flickr Creative Commons)

A global variant of AT&T WarnerMedia’s news channel CNN will no longer be available on British cable television systems starting next month.

The move was confirmed in an online tweet as well as a statement obtained by The Desk that said AT&T WarnerMedia would stop distributing CNN International on Virgin Media, BT and the free satellite television platform Freesat.

Starting September 1, CNN fans in the United Kingdom will have to pay £2 a month or £20 a year (about $2.75 a month or $27.50 a year) to watch a live stream of CNN International via the new streaming service CNN Live, which is currently available on CNN’s website.

One exception is for customers of Comcast-owned Sky satellite or the streaming service NOW TV, both of which will still offer a live feed of CNN International.

AT&T has not announced plans to remove CNN International from other pay or free TV systems in Europe or elsewhere. The international channel offers many of the same live shows as its domestic cable network, though it does include political affairs, sports and business programming that is exclusive to the global channel.

Starting next year, the domestic and international variants of CNN will be split off from AT&T as part of a merger between WarnerMedia and Discovery Communications. It was not clear if the decision to remove CNN International from cable systems in the United Kingdom was related to that plan.

CNN International is available to more than 370 million viewers through one of five regional variants distributed around the world.