MultiChoice launches ‘dishless’ DStv – same price as satellite

MultiChoice Group has launched a “dishless” streaming version of DStv. The offering, which works using the DStv Now app or website, doesn’t require customers to buy and install a satellite dish and decoder to watch.

Pricing is the same as the satellite version of DStv, based on the bouquet customers subscribe to, such as Premium or Compact, a decision that is somewhat surprising – many industry watchers had expected the company to price the dishless product below the legacy satellite bouquets.

But Mark Rayner, CEO of MultiChoice South Africa, said in an interview with TechCentral on Wednesday that the company decided not to introduce separate price plans for the dishless product as this would have added complexity for consumers.

“DStv has tiers from EasyView through Compact up to Premium. When a customer gets DStv, that’s what they get. They can decide on their bouquet and their package based on their budget and their content preferences, but we didn’t want to create a further layer of complexity with multiple pricing options,” Rayner said.

“Who’s to say how it plays out in the future, but we felt clarity and simplicity were a better place to start,” he added.

Though there are no satellite lease costs for MultiChoice associated with the dishless version of DStv, Rayner said there are plenty of other costs, including building a content delivery network and maintaining the streaming service.

No access fee

“There is a financial benefit because the access fee we charge our PVR customers is not relevant, so there’s immediately a R100 saving per month.”

DStv residential packages are all available on the dishless product, with the full set of live channels and Catch Up shows, MultiChoice said. Streaming customers will be able to watch their favourite shows on Catch Up on four devices, with a maximum of two concurrent streams.

The company said it will soon partner with telecommunications operators and Internet service providers to offer bundled packages that combine the benefits of uncapped Internet connectivity with DStv “at incredible value prices”.  — © 2020 NewsCentral Media

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