Pay DTH net active subs base sees a marginal drop in Jan-March quarter

MUMBAI: The total pay direct to home (DTH) net active subscriber base has seen a marginal drop in January-March 2018 quarter.

According to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (TRAI) quarterly Performance Indicator Report, the subscriber base during the quarter dropped to 67.53 million from 67.56 million in the October-December quarter.

The pay DTH net active subscriber base has been growing steadily quarter after quarter. The six pay DTH operators had added 4.91 million net pay active subscribers in 2017 to take the total base to 67.56 million for the year ended 31 December.

With the merger between Dish TV and Videocon d2h, the number of pay DTH platforms has dropped to five. Apart from pay DTH platforms, Doordarshan provides free DTH service through Free Dish.

Following its merger with Videocon d2h, Dish TV has a lion’s share of the pay DTH market with 43% share followed by Tata Sky (25%), Airtel (21%), Sun Direct (10%), and Reliance Digital TV (1%).

Compared to the previous quarter, Tata Sky’s share has increased by a percentage point while that of Reliance Digital TV has dropped by a similar number.

As per the report, a total of 875 private satellite TV channels have been permitted by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) for uplinking only/downlinking/uplinking, as on 31 March.

During the quarter, there were 308 pay channels as reported by 49 broadcasters as compared to 304 pay channels reported in the previous quarter. These 308 pay channels included 213 SD pay TV channels and 95 HD Pay TV channels.

During the quarter ending 31 March 2018, as per the reporting, five new pay channels commenced. One FTA channel namely “Zee Tamil” converted into Pay channel. Further, two pay channels namely “Granada TV HD” & “Trace Sports HD” were reported to be discontinued.

The five pay channels that launched include Zee Cinemalu HD, Zee Telugu HD, Zee Kannada HD, Colors Tamil HD, and Discovery Jeet HD.

GTPL Hathway is carrying the maximum number of TV channels (FTA+Pay+Local) at 436 while Digicable is providing the least number of channels at 261. Siti Networks is carrying the most free to air channels at 195 while GTPL KCBPL has the most pay channels at 243. Fastway has the most local channels at 93.

The reported advertisement revenue of 323 private FM Radio stations during the quarter ending 31 March was Rs 583.41 crore as against Rs 570.08 crore in respect of 325 private FM Radio stations for the previous quarter.

One FM Radio Broadcaster Gwalior Firm operating in the city of Guwahati has not submitted the advertisement revenue.

Apart from the radio stations operated by All India Radio, there are 324 operational private FM Radio stations in 86 existing cities with operational 34 private FM Radio broadcaster as compared to 326 private FM Radio Stations in 86 cities with operational 34 private FM Radio broadcasters in the previous quarter.

During the quarter ending 31 March 2018, three new private FM Radio Stations have become operational and five private FM Radio Stations have discontinued operations.

The three new radio stations are Rourkela (Sarthak Films), Kozhikode (The Mathrubhumi Printing & Publishing Co.), Rourkela (Odisha Television). The discontinued FM radio stations included Panaji (Entertainment Network India), Visakhapatnam (Reliance Broadcast Network), Kannur and Thrissur (India Radio Ventures), and Raipur (Raneka Fincom).