Cable TV

MSOs to put Star India channels on a la carte

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MUMBAI: The multi system operators (MSOs) are gearing up for the big change. In order to meet the deadline given by the Telecom Disputes Settlement Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT), the leading MSOs under the umbrella of All India Digital Cable Federation (AIDCF) met in New Delhi today.

“The main agenda of the meeting was to discuss how we will implement the order passed by the Tribunal,” says AIDCF president and Siti Cable CEO VD Wadhwa speaking to indiantelevision.com.

During the meeting, the MSOs discussed the modus operandi for implementation of RIO by 10 November and also the challenges.

“There are three major challenges: at the consumer level, at the local cable operator level and thirdly at the technology level,” adds Wadhwa.

Every MSO, according to Wadhwa has different subscriber numbers. “All the packages have to be upgraded or downgraded. We will have to see if the system can support the changes for millions of subscribers,” he says.

AIDCF has decided to put all the Star India channels on a la carte. “We cannot carry all the Star channels, since it is coming up to be very expensive. So we have decided to put all the Star channels on a la carte and will let the consumer decide which channels they want,” he informs.

Wadhwa says that even after the incentives that Star is offering, the cost for the MSO has doubled. “Even if we take the maximum discounts, the channel prices are going up by 100 per cent,” he says.

Not only this, AIDCF is forming a sub-committee which will be meeting Star India officials early next week. “The committee will meet the officials to explain to them the challenges we are facing. This system is viable for none,” he adds.

All the MSOs will be signing the RIO deals with Star before 10 November and in the meanwhile start working on creating new packages. “We will decide the pricing of the channel based on the consumer demand for the channel,” he concludes.

The MSOs will inform the consumers of the changes at individual level.

The meeting was attended by Siti Cable, Hathway Cable & Datacom, Den Networks, Manthan, GTPL amongst others. 

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