Bosses at the channel are apparently concerned that they have "become too reliant" on the Simon Cowell contest, which took a tumble in the ratings for its eighth series last year.
"Every television network is always looking for the next big thing. They'd be crazy not to," an alleged senior source told the Daily Star. "X Factor has had a brilliant run, but no show lasts for ever.
"Over the past few years Simon Cowell has been the main source for many of our top hits but some feel that we've got too many eggs in one basket and we've become too reliant on one man."
However, ITV entertainment boss Elaine Bedell - who admitted recently to being "hungry for a big primetime weekend event show" - has said that commissioners have yet to find a format they feel confident about.
"The ideas need to have the production values of The X Factor, Britain's Got Talent and I'm A Celebrity and they need a major piece of talent," she explained.
"We get very few pitches for big event shows. They're risky to commission."
Auditions for series nine of The X Factor UK are currently taking place around the country.
Photo gallery - The X Factor UK 2012, Liverpool auditions:
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