KIVI-TV is the ABC-affiliated television station for Idaho's Treasure Valley. Licensed to Nampa, it broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 24 (or virtual channel 6.1 via PSIP) from a transmitter at the Bogus Basin ski area summit.
KSAW-LD in Twin Falls operates as a semi-satellite of KIVI extending the ABC signal into the Magic Valley. As such, it clears all network and syndicated programming as provided through its parent but some of the non-network fare airs at a different time on KSAW. That outlet also airs separate legal identifications and commercials inserts targeting the Magic Valley. Master control and most other internal operations originate from KIVI's studios but KSAW does operate an advertising sales office locally in Twin Falls.
The station signed-on February 1, 1974 with the call sign KITC (the callsign standing for "Idaho Television Company", for the station's original owner) and was Boise's third commercial station. It aired an analog signal on VHF channel 6 and immediately took on an ABC affiliation. Prior to the station's launch, the network was split between CBS affiliate KBOI-TV and NBC station KTVB, with programing from ABC being carried on both outlets in off-hours. Although Boise had been large enough since the 1950s to support three full network affiliates, the difficulty of building a translator network to serve this vast and mountainous market scared off many prospective owners until the late 1960s.
In 1975, KITC changed calls to KIVI-TV for the first time but would ultimately drop the -TV suffix in 1998. Idaho Television Company sold KIVI and its then-sister KPVI in Pocatello to Futura Titanium Corporation in 1977. Futura, in turn, sold the station to the Evening Post Publishing Company in 1981, and Evening Post struck a deal to sell the station to current owner Journal in 2001, with the deal closing in 2002.
KKVI in Twin Falls was the Magic Valley's original ABC affiliate through its status as a full-powered satellite of KPVI in Pocatello. In January 1996, the parent station switched affiliations to NBC. Since that network was already seen in Twin Falls through KTVB's low-powered semi-satellite KTFT-LP, KKVI became that area's first full-time Fox affiliate as KXTF. Fox was previously seen on that station off-hours in a secondary nature. Due to the network changes in Twin Falls, KIVI's owner purchased K68CO and turned it into a low-powered semi-satellite as KSAW-LP.
On July 1, 2008 it was reported Banks Broadcasting had agreed to sell KNIN to Journal Communications (owner of KIVI) which would create Boise's first television duopoly. On November 10, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) initially rejected the application. Shortly afterward, Banks Broadcasting filed an appeal. The FCC reversed its decision to reject the deal on January 16, 2009. The purchase closed on April 24, at which point KNIN vacated its longtime studios on West Bannock Street in Downtown Boise and was integrated into KIVI's facilities in Nampa.
On July 30, 2014, it was announced that E.W. Scripps Company would acquire Journal Communications in an all-stock transaction. The combined firm retained the companies broadcast holdings and spun off their print assets as Journal Media Group. Originally, KIVI-TV, KNIN-TV and 5 radio stations, were not included in the merger; in September, Journal filed to transfer these stations to Journal/Scripps Divestiture Trust (with Kiel Media Group as trustee). The merger was completed on April 1, 2015. Scripps retained KIVI and the other 5 radio stations, but not KNIN. However, KIVI will continue to provide services and facilities to KNIN, which was sold to Raycom Media.
The station's digital channel is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|6.1||720p||16:9||KIVI DT||Main KIVI-TV programming / ABC|
KIVI shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 6, on June 19, 2009, one week later. All of Journal's television stations (including KIVI) added or regained the -TV suffix. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 24. Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former VHF analog channel 6.
The station currently ranks at a distant second place to KTVB (and sometimes third behind KBOI) in Nielsen ratings for all newscast periods. Until July 2010, KIVI aired an hour-long broadcast weeknights at 6 along with KBOI. The 6:30 portion was eventually dropped as a result of low viewership in the comparative time slot. Following Journal's acquisition of KNIN, KIVI began producing a weeknight prime time newscast on that station. Known as Today's 6 News on K9, the show was seen for thirty minutes and competed with a nightly half-hour newscast on then RTV affiliate KYUU-LP (which was produced by KBOI).
In January 2011, KIVI upgraded its local newscasts to 16:9 enhanced definition widescreen with the KNIN show being included in the change. Although not true high definition level, broadcasts match the aspect ratio of HD television screens. Corresponding with KNIN's affiliation switch to Fox in September 2011, its prime time show became known as Fox 9 News at 9 and initially featured separate news anchors but shared other personnel with KIVI.
The prime time show was also expanded to an hour on weeknights and added a weekend edition. Around the same time, the station's logo coloring was changed from gold, maroon and silver to red, white and blue; this was to allow the station to utilize the same standardized Renderon graphics package used by Journal's Milwaukee flagship WTMJ-TV and other company-owned stations.
KSAW currently simulcasts all local news programs from KIVI except for weeknights at 6. During the broadcasts, most coverage presented focuses on the greater Boise area although regional forecasts geared toward the Magic Valley are included in KIVI's weather segments. Usually, most semi-satellites of another station provide some coverage of their home territory (in this case, the Magic Valley of Idaho). However, KSAW does not produce any local inserts during KIVI's newscasts since there are no news-related personnel locally based out of their Twin Falls offices.