A recent report by MyBroadband.co.za says international trends will force MultiChoice to seriously look at reducing prices in 2019. The DStv Premium platform is already losing customers a dime a dozen to the superior cheaper Netflix service and one of the only ways to prevent them from losing more is to make it cheaper. The other way is to try and do what NETFIX do – but MultiChoise, a creation of the Boere Mafia (read: Naspers) should have been out of the starting blocks a couple of years back it they wanted to have a hope in hell.
Cancelled pay-TV services
My Broadband says the impact of rising satellite and cable TV subscriptions – the equivalent of DStv Premium in the USA – has seen customers ditch their packages in droves overseas. This is something the Naspers ‘diknekke’ should take note of.
According to data published by Variety, the number of people in the US who have cancelled pay-TV services will reach 33 million in 2018 – a 32.8% increase compared to 2017. The report also says the high price of pay-TV is a big reason why this is happening. The average pay-TV bill in the US is $100 per month.
In South Africa, the situation is not that different. DStv Premium with the Access Fee is R899 per month, and hundreds of thousands of subscribers have dropped the service in recent years.
Netflix has also played a part locally, following its official launch in SA at the start of 2016. Even MultiChoice has admitted that Netflix is hurting its DStv Premium subscriber numbers. At R169 per month for the top Netflix package, it is easy to see why.
In Netflix’s latest results, the company stated it signed up 6.96 million customers in the third quarter of 2018 – bringing its global total to 137.1 million.
What makes this number even more impressive is that people share their Netflix accounts or view as a family or group, which means the number of people actually watching Netflix is much higher.
At the same time, companies like MultiChoice continue to raise subscription prices to their services and show advertising during shows, which Netflix does not.
While switching from NoChoice to Netflix is a no brainer, MultiChoice has started with plans to save themselves. It launched Showmax, its own streaming service, as well as Catch Up video-on-demand service, and Box Office for movies.
MultiChoice also launched DStv Now, which lets users stream their DStv channels through supported apps or a web browser. Users must have a DStv satellite package for this to work, though.
A DStv Premium streaming package is unlikely to succeed if the standard satellite fee of R809 per month is charged. According to a MyBroadband survey this year, the majority of users would only be willing to pay between R100 to R300 per month for a DStv Premium streaming package.
This is in line with the price of Netflix locally, and would require a drastic price cut by MultiChoice.