Live Well Network is a home, health and lifestyle high definition digital subchannel network owned by Disney-ABC Television Group, a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company and is operated by the ABC Owned Television Stations. The network launched as Live Well HD Network on April 27, 2009, and is currently available on digital subchannels of all ABC-owned and -operated stations and a handful of other station groups, with additional stations adding the channel in the near future. The channel airs home, health and lifestyle programming and is similar to ION Life, which launched in 2007.The network broadcasts in a lower-bandwidth form of 720p HD format in order to preserve bandwidth for the main HD station signal and additional 480i digital subchannels; for instance, WABC-TV’s main channel (7.1) broadcasts in HD at 10 Mbit/s, while Live Well on Channel 7.2 has a 5 Mbit/s HD signal, leaving 3 Mbit/s for their local version of the Live Well channel in 480i on Channel 7.3. Cable carriage is also featured in the ABC markets (e.g., Comcast in Houston, Texas and Cablevision in the New York/Tri-State Region), either through the full HD feed or a 480i standard definition version.
Live Well Network airs in high definition on ABC’s owned-and-operated stations as part of the stations’ Plus-branded subchannels (e.g. WABC-DT2 in New York). and on non-ABC affiliate groups, mainly those outside of the Top 10 Nielsen markets. In September 2010, Belo became the first non-ABC group to sign on with the network, adding it to their stations on November 8, 2010. The stations include WFAA, KMOV, WCNC-TV, WVEC, & WWL-TV (WFAA and WVEC are ABC affiliates). Not all of the Belo-owned stations originally aired the network in widescreen (unlike the ABC group), which led the network to drop the “HD” from its branding to become simply Live Well Network. Currently, four of the five Belo stations (WFAA, WCNC, WVEC, and WWL) transmit their LiveWell subchannels in 16:9 standard-definition widescreen while KMOV transmits its LiveWell subchannel in 4:3 standard definition (with 16:9 letterboxes). SJL Broadcasting became the second outside broadcast group to offer Live Well on its stations, following its purchase of WTVG and WJRT from ABC in 2011; both broadcast the network in standard definition format only.
On May 26, 2011, it was announced that a deal has been reached to air the network on nine Scripps-owned stations (several, but not all of them, are ABC affiliates). No word on when those stations will air the network, though WXYZ-TV in Detroit added the service at 12:00 AM on August 1, 2011, replacing its former RTV affiliation Currently, the WXYZ and KMCI-TV subchannels are transmitted in widescreen SD while the WEWS-TV subchannel uses letterboxing in its 4:3 transmissions. On January 9, 2012, Citadel Communications announced that it will be adding Live Well to all 5 of its major network-affiliated stations (four of them ABC affiliates), bringing the network’s reach to around 55% U.S. television households. Young Broadcasting announced the addition of most of their stations to the network as of the end of January 2012.