The Direct-to-Home operator, Dish TV has achieved the distinction of becoming the first company in its sector to have almost fullymigrated to the GST regime in all the states, except Himachal Pradesh as the state has not yet opened the migration.
According to Information and Broadcasting Minister Venkaiah Naidu, Direct-to-home (DTH) operators need 68 additional transponders to accommodate more television channels on their platform. He said, “As on date, there is a committed demand from the DTH service providers for 68 more transponders.”
Currently, DD FreeDish offers 124 channels including HD channels, but now the DTH platform of Doordarshan, is going to take this number to 250 in the next 24 months, according to RajyavardhanRathore, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting, who also told the Parliament thatDoordarshan’s DD National channel has been uplinked in HD format since 1st January this year.
The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) has directed the Department of Space (DoS) to block the signals of Asia Broadcast Satellite (ABS), which is beaming in India without licence from the ministry. ABS is running a free DTH platform on the lines of Doordarshan’s Freedish. It has even added many popular Indian TV channels on its platform.
For the very first time, DD Freedish has reserved the upcoming auction of vacant slots for non-news channels and set the floor price at a record high of Rs 8 crore. This will be the first auction of DD Freedish’s slots in the new fiscal year 2017-18. The e-auction for non-news channels will be conducted on 11th April. Earlier (32nd e-auction), the reserve price for news and non-news channels was hiked from Rs 4.3 crore to Rs 4.8 crore.
To counter Doordarshan’s Freedish, Dish TV has started to offer a package of only free-to-air (FTA) channels; the aim is to tap into low-end customer segments. The new plan does not include any pay channel and is priced at Rs 1,149 (including taxes) for 3 years. In order to make the offer competitive, Dish TV is offering over 100 FTA channels.
Videocon d2h has reached a deal with Sony Liv, a video-on-demand (VoD) platform by Sony Pictures Networks India, for its HD Smart Connect set-top box (STB). The agreement will enable Videocon d2h’s HD Smart Connect STB customers to access Sony Liv app and enjoy its content. Netflix has similar deal with Sony Liv.
Dish TV’s total channel strength has touched 615, as it has recently added 23 new channels including 9 HD ones to its basket. Now Dish TV’s HD portfolio has 68 channels. The new HD channels are: Maa HD 1605, Asianet HD 1901, Star Gold Select HD 381, Star Jalsha HD 1403, Jalsha Movies HD 1430, Star Pravah HD 1205, Star Sports Select HD2 646, Cineplex HD 383 and BBC Earth HD 828.
To woo Indian customers who like foreign content, Tata Sky has launched ‘Tata Sky World Series’ an exclusive platform for foreign content. The pop-up service has premiered first with Italian language crime drama, Gomorrah on March 19. This programme will run for a month with English subtitles with one new episode a day along with previous episodes available throughout the day. The crime drama will be available to all Tata Sky subscribers via Tata Sky’s Set-Top-Box & Tata Sky Mobile App at no extra cost.
To know whether it will violate any anti-trust laws, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) has asked the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) to give its views on the merger of two big direct-to-home (DTH) companies Dish TV India and Videocon d2h. “CCI has reached out to us. We are still evaluating the case and haven’t reached a decision. TRAI is expected to respond to the request in a few days. According to the Competition Commission of India Act, 2002, the regulator can seek opinions of other authorities. CCI is expecting a reply within 60 days.. “TRAI has been consulted for an opinion on where the players stand in the market,” a CCI official said.
DishTV has tied up with ICICI Bank by consolidated assets, to make payments and recharges easier. The association will enable subscribers of the DTH platform to recharge their connections on any Unified Payment Interface (UPI) enabled app and through *99#, a National Unified USSD Platform (NUUP) in a hassle-free and cashless manner.
Direct-To-Home (DTH) operator Tata Sky has expressed intent to discontinue 29 TV channels for breach of contract. The DTH operator, through a public notice, stated that these channels will be discontinued after three weeks. The channels include iTV Network’s India News, India News Haryana, India News MP CG, India News UP UK, India News Rajasthan, News X, and News X HD, F7 Broadcast’s News World India and News World Odisha, and 9X Media’s 9XO. It also includes Tamil channels Adhytam TV, Vendhar TV, and Puthiya Thalaimurai. Gujarati spiritual channel Soham is also part of the list. Other channels include Dangal, Enterr10, Fakt Marathi, Jai Maharashtra, Protidin Time, Prameya News 7, HM TV, National Voice UP UK, IBC 24, Maharashtra 1, News BTV, Satsang, Jonack, Jeevan TV and Darshana TV.
To retain in the world of DTH, the public broadcaster Doordarshan has increased the reserve price for slots on its free Direct-To-Home platform Freedish to ` 4.8 crore from ` 4.3 crore. The complete application was submitted on Feb 14 and DD will hold the 32nd e-auction for vacant slot on Freedish. Among the three channels that had won the slot and 24 channels that renewed their respective slots, the pubcaster had earned ` 129.3 crore from its 31st e-auction. The highest bid was ` 5.1 crore and the lowest was 4.3 crore, which is the base price per slot. Freedish had earned an average amount of ` 4.8 crore. Interested channels will have to submit uplinking and downlinking permission from the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting with the application. They are also required to give a participation amount of ` 1.5 crore as demand draft in favour of DD besides a non-refundable processing fee of ` 10,000.
ABS-2A was launched in June 2016 aboard SpaceX Falcon 9 and will provide enhanced satellite communications services, including direct-to-home television services. Recently, Boeing has delivered ABS-2A, an all-electric propulsion 702 satellite, to ABS which entered into commercial service on Jan 21. ABS, one of the globe's fastest growing global satellite operators, offers a complete range of tailored solutions including broadcasting, data and telecommunication services to broadcasters, service providers, enterprises and government organisations.
On the basis of comparision of different parameters, Tata sky, the pay TV and over-the-top service provider has claimed that it offers 600 channels and services, which is the highest ever in this sector. Tata Sky was offering 483 SD and 76 HD channels till Dec 2016, which remains the highest in the industry. Over and above, it boasts a bouquet of 31 VAS, 15 special SD and HD movie platforms, 9 exclusive +1 channel feeds.
The latest report on the impact of OTT on television in India is surely going to delight the cockles of executives in broadcasting companies and probably raise the hackles of those in the video on demand space. As consumers are bound to increase their spenditure and time spent on video, either on handheld devices or on their smart TVs or their laptops, this will have a negligible impact on traditional linear TV’s fortunes.
Sushilkumar Agrawal, CEO of Ultra Media said, “The company has been known for offering state-of-the-art services globally. We are happy to provide some excellent gems from our film stable. We are sure Amazon with its superior technology will make films reach a wider audience in India.” Expanding its content offering, Amazon Prime Video, which launched in India last week, has partnered film acquisition and distribution company Ultra Media & Entertainment. Apart from Ultra, Amazon Prime Video has also tied up with top Indian and international studios.
Tata Sky, 21st Dec. 2016 launched ‘Tata Sky Gurus’ - a 24X7 ad-free video service providing teachings of spiritual gurus on its interactive platform. Tata Sky subscribers can now have access to the wisdom of Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar (Art of Living Foundation), Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev (Isha Foundation) and Brahma Kumaris (Brahma Kumari World Spiritual University) from the comfort of their homes. The exhaustive content for this service is curated by Shemaroo and will be available exclusively on the Tata Sky platform.
A prominent DTH operator Tata Sky has partnered Shemaroo Entertainment to launch a 24×7 ad-free video service called ‘Tata Sky Gurus’ that will provide teachings of spiritual gurus on its interactive platform. The content for this service is curated by Shemaroo and will be available exclusively on the Tata Sky platform. The spiritual gurus will deliver talks and discourses across topics connecting varied human emotions, challenges and complexities of life. Tata Sky Gurus is a service where they can have unlimited access to their gurus’ teachings and thoughts, whenever they want.
Mr. Anil Khera, CEO, Videocon d2h was recognised as the “Man of Electronics” by CEAMA. This covered accolade is in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the growth of the consumer electronics and appliances industry in India and reaffirms the deep respect the industry has for his pioneering stewardship of the industry.
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