INX Media’s Hindi entertainment channel 9X has made its soft launch on Sky Digital today.

9X has been planning a UK launch for the past few months with negotiations with several broadcasters over EPG slots on the Sky Digital platform.

BizAsia.co.uk was first to exclusively confirm 9X’s UK plans in early-April and later revealed that it was to takeover DD News’ EPG slot channel 832.

9X will be showing a looped 4-hour tape of programmes over a 24-hour period for the next few weeks until it has all the logistics in place to broadcast officially.

In an exclusive interview with Indrani Mukerjea, founder and CEO, INX Media Pvt Ltd, confirmed that the UK feed will incorporate some programmes from its hugely successful music channel 9XM as fillers. There are also plans to launch 9XM and the news channel NewsX in the UK later this year.

9X is available free-to-air on Sky Digital channel 832.

Yesterday we reported the latest success for 9X – According to TV audience measuring body aMap’s data in India for week 17 C&S 4+, 9X is giving other channels a run for their money by staying put at number three in all Hindi General Entertainment Channels (GECs). Whilst STAR Plus remains the market leader with 291 GRP points, ZEE TV is second with 182 points, 9X follows with 88, NDTV Imagine in fourth with 80. STAR One (67), Sony Entertainment Television Asia (66) and Sahara One (54) were holding their own in distance places.