- D2h raced ahead of other providers in the migration process, but its consumers are still facing a lot of issues
- Sun Direct, Tata Sky and Dish TV did away with additional slab NCF charges to attract more customers.
The new direction regarding the prices in the TV industry passed by Trai last year took the DTH industry by storm. All the DTH and cable service providers were rushing to migrate their subscribers to the new packs and prices. However, to the relief of the users, Trai extended the deadline for the implementation thus providing them more time to make the switch. This migration process also revealed a lot of loopholes in the system and the subscribers got a chance to do a reality check about their DTH service providers. While some subscribers complained about channels being missing, others were troubled by crashing websites. It is pretty evident that a lot of subscribers might also change their service provider in the same period. In case you are in a similar situation and wondering what each of the DTH providers is offering, here is our quick take.
Tata Sky is easily one of the biggest DTH service provider in the country. After the Trai mandate though, the operator was slow to list the new channel packs and pricing. However, it is safe to say that Tata Sky has done a commendable job of introducing a smooth migration process for the subscribers. After the mandate, Tata Sky has launched tons of HD and SD packs for the subscribers in regional languages as well. There are also Mini-packs in the portfolio and combined with the straightforward app and website based migration process Tata Sky has managed to stay on top of the preference list of a lot of subscribers. The operator also remains ahead of other operators by boasting as many as 65 exclusive channels.
Notably, D2h was the first operator to respond after the Trai mandate came out back in October. The operator was also quick to start the migration process ahead of others and hoped for subscriber addition to its existing base in the interim. Later the operator introduced many combo plans and topped them up with add-on packs in SD and HD and many packs in regional languages as well. Recently, D2h has also put out information about additional connections as well, noting that subscribers can avail them by only paying Rs 50 as flat NCF.
However, D2h subscribers have faced and are still facing a lot of issues related to various channels. In fact, most of the consumers are still not able to reach the company’s toll-free number for clarifying their doubts.
Dish TV is also offering similar combo packs to the consumers since it’s the one who operates D2h.
Airtel Digital TV
Bharti Airtel’s DTH wing also boasts of an impressive subscriber base of more than 15 million in the country. The operator, after the Trai mandate, introduced many channel packs for its subscribers. To ease up the process in a better way, Airtel Digital TV also made it possible for the subscribers to select their new channels via the Set-Top Box only. The operator also launched lots of regional channel packs, but as of late Trai has put Airtel Digital TV in crosshair after some subscribers of Airtel Digital lodged their grievance about missing channels and black screens although the problem was quickly resolved soon after.
Sun Direct is a prominent DTH provider in the south, and it is safe to say that although the provider does not boast of a widespread network in the North, it has established a solid stronghold in South India. Further, the move of completely doing away with additional slab NCF charges made Sun Direct an attractive choice for a lot of subscribers. Following in the lines of other DTH providers, Sun Direct has launched new channel packs, regional channel and add-on packs in HD, SD.
After weeks of noticing the happenings in the DTH industry, we have noted that in terms of the number of channels and number of channel packs, ease of migration and customer service Tata Sky is the DTH provider which has managed to satisfy the subscribers to a large extent. The provider had also launched a similar offer as Sun Direct by doing away with NCF on select channels. With that being said, it is also worth noting that as the days pass DTH providers are easing into the migration process, and the move to the new Trai plans along with the customer service can be expected to improve for all DTH companies in the coming weeks. Do let us know what you experienced with your DTH provider in the comments section below.
Arpit spends his day closely following the telecom and tech industry. A music connoisseur and a night owl, he also takes a deep interest in the Indian technology start-up scene and spends rest of his time spilling poetry and stories on paper.