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Videocon d2h hikes subscription fee on packs

MUMBAI: Direct-to-home (DTH) operators are increasing the subscription fee of their packages due to rise in service tax, various levies and other input costs.

Videocon d2h has increased subscription packages by a minimum of Rs 20 per month. The price hike will depend on the pack of television channels that the subscriber selects.

Some of the other DTH operators have also gone for price hikes. Dish TV is expected to announce a price increase soon. However, Dish TV’s Zing offering will most likely not increase subscription rates.

Average revenue per user (ARPU) for DTH companies would go up by 4–7% due to upgraded subscription prices, according to industry estimates.

Saurabh DhootVideocon d2h executive chairman Saurabh Dhoot said that the price increase is primarily due to the government’s additional levy. “The whole essence of Videocon d2h is about providing outstanding service quality for our customers across India. The rise in the price of subscription packages is due to the unexpected rise in levies as per government policy changes. We are committed to continuously introducing newer technologies in our industry,” he said.

According to Videocon d2h website, the SD base pack price stands at Rs 275 per month while for HD it is Rs 650. The price of the Flexi Pack remains at Rs 99 a month.

Videocon d2h’s ARPU in the fiscal third quarter stood at Rs 211. The company had guided for ARPU to climb to Rs 215 in FY16 compared to the year-ago period’s Rs 196. However, this looks hard to achieve as in the first two quarters of FY16 ARPU stayed flat at Rs 205.

Anil KheraVideocon d2h CEO Anil Khera said that the company would strive to provide better services to its customers. “We would like to assure our customers that any increase in price will be utilised for their benefit like increasing number of channels and introducing new services. Our rate increase has been necessitated by the new policies announced in the Union Budget. We will strive to continuously improve our overall customer experience,” he said.

Videocon d2h provides more than 550 channels and services. Recently, the company had announced numerous technological advancements and content acquisitions, which included new hardware like HD Smart Connect Set-Top Box (Connected Box) that converts an existing TV into a smart TV.