You are here: Home » Economy & Policy » News
Business Standard

TRAI's new year bonanza: Now you get more channels at lesser price

At present, DTH or cable TV operators provide only 100 channels for Rs 153. Now, cable operators will have to provide 200 channels for Rs 153

Topics
TRAI  | Telecom Regulatory Authority of India Trai | Telecom department

Sukanya Roy  |  New Delhi 

To protect consumer interests, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) on Wednesday has released amendments to the New Tariff Order (NTO). According to the new order, number of free-to-air channels has increased, pricing for pay channels has reduced and has capped the number of bouquets of pay channels offered by broadcasters.

Analysts say this move is likely to lower the average revenue per user (ARPU) for TV operators. It had surged by close to 60 per cent, on an average, after the NTO took effect. This would mean a lower share of revenue for broadcasters, who used to get almost 50 per cent share after the NTO came into being in February last year. It will negatively impact broadcasters’ revenue, which had grown 30-40 per cent year-on-year due to the higher share and increased ARPU.

At present, direct-to-home (DTH) or cable TV operators provide only 100 channels for a network capacity fee (NCF) levy of Rs 153. Now, cable operators will have to provide 200 channels for Rs 153.

There was no cap on the maximum number of channels in in the free-to-air (FTA) category in the earlier NTO, which implied that more niche channels will move towards the FTA. Under the existing system, subscribers had to pay at least Rs 153 a month regardless of the number of channels they watched. Operators now have also been mandated that they will not charge more than ₹160 per month for giving all channels available on their platform.

has reviewed the pricing of channel bouquets compared to a la carte ones. The regulator has now set January 15 as the deadline for broadcasters to announce their new pricing structure. The has reduced the ceiling price of pay channels for inclusion in bouquets from Rs 19 to Rs 12. That simply means that channels having an MRP of Rs 12 or less will be permitted to be part of a bouquet.

According to the NTO 2019, consumers were given the option to pay only for the channels that they chose to watch, at the maximum retail price (MRP). Earlier, they were offered pre-set channel bouquets. The NTO was expected to bring monthly bills down, but it was the opposite that happened.

The lack of any caps on discounts offered on bouquets, compared to a la carte channel pricing, is being “misused to throttle market discovery of TV channel prices, by giving huge discounts on the bouquets," the regulator had said.

In order to address that, has set two conditions to ensure the pricing of a-la carte channels does not become illusionary. First, the sum of the a la carte rates of pay channels forming part of a bouquet is not to exceed 1.5x the rate of the bouquet of which such channels are a part. Second, the a la carte rates of each pay channel, forming part of a bouquet, are not to exceed 3x the average rate of a pay channel of the bouquet of which the channel is a part.

For homes in which more than one connection is active in the name of one person, DPOs can charge a maximum of 40 per cent of the declared NCF on the additional connections. It has also permitted DPOs to offer discounts on long-term subscriptions (six months and above).

Listen to this podcast to know more

MONTHLY STAR

Business Standard Digital

Business Standard Digital Monthly Subscription
149.00  
subscribe
Complete access to the premium product
Convenient - Pay as you go
Pay using Master/Visa Credit Card & ICICI VISA Debit Card
Auto renewed (subject to your card issuer's permission)
Cancel any time in the future
Requires personal information

What you get?

ON BUSINESS STANDARD DIGITAL

  • Unlimited access to all the content on any device through browser or app.
  • Exclusive content, features, opinions and comment – hand-picked by our editors, just for you.
  • Pick 5 of your favourite companies. Get a daily email with all the news updates on them.
  • Track the industry of your choice with a daily newsletter specific to that industry.
  • Stay on top of your investments. Track stock prices in your portfolio.
  • 18 years of archival data.

NOTE :

  • The product is a monthly auto renewal product.
  • Cancellation Policy: You can cancel any time in the future without assigning any reasons, but 48 hours prior to your card being charged for renewal. We do not offer any refunds.
  • To cancel, communicate from your registered email id and send the email with the cancellation request to assist@bsmail.in. Include your contact number for speedy action. Requests mailed to any other ID will not be acknowledged or actioned upon.

SMART MONTHLY

Business Standard Digital

Business Standard Digital - 12 Months
1499.00
subscribe
Get 12 months of Business Standard digital access
Single Seamless Sign-up to Business Standard Digital
Convenient - Once a year payment
Pay using an instrument of your choice - Credit/Debit Cards, Net Banking, Payment Wallets accepted
Exclusive Invite to select Business Standard events

What you get

ON BUSINESS STANDARD DIGITAL

  • Unlimited access to all content on any device through browser or app.
  • Exclusive content, features, opinions and comment - hand-picked by our editors, just for you.
  • Pick 5 of your favourite companies. Get a daily email with all the news updates on them.
  • Track the industry of your choice with a daily newsletter specific to that industry.
  • Stay on top of your investments. Track stock prices in your portfolio.

NOTE :

  • This product is a monthly auto renewal product.
  • Cancellation Policy: You can cancel any time in the future without assigning any reasons, but 48 hours prior to your card being charged for renewal. We do not offer any refunds.
  • To cancel, communicate from your registered email id and send the mail with the request to assist@bsmail.in. Include your contact number for easy reference. Requests mailed to any other ID will not be acknowledged or actioned upon.
First Published: Thu, January 02 2020. 13:09 IST
RECOMMENDED FOR YOU