Why we're called Manhattan TV

Alex
30 Nov • 2 min read

We were recently asked by one of our followers on Twitter why we are called Manhattan TV. It was then we realised we had never fully explained the origins of our name. So here it is, the story behind the name...

Back in the 90s, the market in the UK for set-top boxes was very limited. Freeview and Freesat didn’t exist yet and subscription TV from Sky was ruling the roost.

Globally, however, the market was very different, with very few subscription TV platforms making their own set-top boxes. Instead, companies abroad would supply a viewing card that you put into any set-top box with a suitable card slot. This meant we were regularly exporting over a million boxes a year.

As a brand we needed to appeal to an international audience and think of something that would sound familiar to a wide variety of cultures and experiences. The name “Manhattan” came about because it was considered internationally appealing, particularly in the middle east where many of our products were headed. Manhattan felt like the world’s capital, and so adopting the name Manhattan was our way of internationalising our products and giving our customers something to relate to.

Fast forward to 2020 and the days of selling a single set-top box around the world are over, with each market now having its own unique platforms and requirements. We now focus entirely on making set-top boxes for our home market and in particular the UK’s Freeview platform, which is almost unique around the world in the way it provides so much quality TV - live and on-demand and almost entirely subcription-free.

Today, even though the way we watch and enjoy modern TV has changed significantly, at our very core we have the same goal of providing our customers with the simplest way to watch their favourite telly. So, in that sense, you could say not very much has changed at all!

We love hearing from you and seeing your questions, so if there is anything else that sparks your curiosity, tweet us on @Manhattan_TV or contact us by email.