|Launched||8 January 2004|
|Owned by||Media Prima Berhad|
|Picture format||1080i HDTV|
(downscaled to 16:9 576i for the SDTV feed)
|Unifi TV||Channel 108|
(Malaysia only) (HD)
8TV is a Malaysian Chinese-language free-to-air television network focused on the Chinese community of Malaysia. Its programming consists of mostly dramas, sitcoms, and reality shows made in Chinese, either produced in Malaysia or imported from other countries, such as Hong Kong, China, Taiwan and Singapore and occasionally Thai and Korean drama for Malay viewers.
8TV was launched on 1 July 1995 as MetroVision. It was managed by City Television, part of the Melewar Group, which was controlled by the Negeri Sembilan royal family. It was first available only in Klang Valley, Seremban, parts of Pahang and Malacca, but later expanded to Kedah and Johor, also being receivable from Singapore.
Due to the Asian financial crisis and intense competition from other channels (especially NTV7), MetroVision shut down on 1 November 1999. The operator promised to re-open the channel in March 2000 after a supposed "signal upgrade" but it failed to materialise.
On 8 January 2004, 8TV was relaunched and starts using its' present name with few Chinese, Malay and English contents in the beginning. Throughout its history, all the contents were gradually replaced by Chinese content as more of them were added to the channel's broadcasting slot. On 5 March 2018, 8TV became an independent first Chinese-language television channel. NTV7's Mandarin programming was moved to 8TV as early as January 2018, due to the former changing its audience focus.
Although English, Malay, and Chinese language are spoken in the channel, only Mandarin is used in all of its news broadcasts. There was also a short-lived Malay news broadcast that was available in the channel's early years. TV series that had been broadcast may be repeated on the channel a year or two later, with the exception of those produced by TVB. According to an announcement by Tonton - Media Prima's online portal service - a programme reschedule was implemented on 1 April 2016, with almost all Chinese programmes shown on Saturdays to Tuesdays, while English programmes retain their time slots as usual on Wednesdays to Fridays, but by June 2017, 8TV broadcast only one English programme, which broadcasts every Friday.
The rescheduling also includes a 3-hour morning home shopping block brought in part by Korean conglomerate CJ Group titled CJ Wow Shop which had also been introduced across other Media Prima channels, some more affected by the changes (especially NTV7 and TV9). However, this block has attract huge criticism on social media as a large part of daytime schedule has been replaced by CJ Wow Shop, which these slots had been previously running mostly reruns, religious programming and kids programming. The programme was initially broadcast in Malay on the channel like its sister channel before being broadcast in Mandarin beginning 8 January 2017 onwards.
As a Chinese-oriented TV channel, 8TV broadcasts more Chinese programmes and movies in conjunction with the Chinese New Year celebrations every year. For the same purpose, the channel also distributes its Chinese New Year singles discography alongside its sister channel NTV7 and sister radio channel OneFM in competition with rival TV company, Astro since 2011. It had previously release and distributed its Chinese New Year singles on its own from 2009 to 2010.
Beginning from 2015 onwards, 8TV, OneFM and NTV7 release and distribute their Chinese New Year singles yearly together as a group with their own themes, theme songs and mascots based on the 12 animal zodiac as well as its related merchandise (e.g. soft toys). In addition, the discography team responsible also tour across the nation to promote their discography and its merchandise. The CDs are also sold on shelves of all Popular Bookstore CD Rama kiosks nationwide during the festive season. OneFM left the singles group while NTV7 collaborates with the channel for the last time in 2018.