The competitors have only begun recovering from the shakeup of the telecom industry by Reliance Jio. It is now reported that Reliance Jio is going to expand its business and start its own D2H services in the Indian market. It is rumored that the service may be available as a Hybrid DTH set-top box (STB). There is no confirmation of this by the company, but it has been found that the launch of the service may happen very soon.
Airtel has already begun offering Hybrid DTH which is available under the brand Airtel Internet TV. There is no doubt that these two telecom giants will once again go one on one with each other in a fight for the greater market share. And like the last time around with Reliance Jio, consumers are going to reap the benefits of a future price between the two and others in the business of D2H services.
A hybrid set top box is different from a standard STB. The former provides streaming content in addition to cable programming, while the latter only provides digital cable content. People with subscriptions to online streaming services like Amazon Prime Video or Netflix will be able to watch the streamed content through the Hybrid STB. Thus, instead of buying smart TVs or media streaming devices such as , Amazon Fire Stick, Chromecast, etc., consumes can watch online programming on their TV via a hybrid STB.
Some pictures of the set top box of Reliance Jio were recently leaked over the web. It is reported that the STB will feature an Ethernet port along with a set of standard ports such as USB, HDMI, and audio video. This means that the device may offer Hybrid D2H services. It is also rumored that Reliance Jio D2H will offer more than 360 channels and a minimum of 50 channels will be available in high definition.
Different reports also suggest that Reliance DTH services will come with a 7-day catch up feature, which will permit consumers to watch week old programming. Airtel allows content to be stored locally. This is not the case with the Jio D2H services, where content will be stored on the servers of Reliance Jio and available for access as and when a user wants it. This means that consumers will require fast broadband access speeds so that their viewing experience is not hindered. It is known that Reliance is diving head-on into the broadband services sector. Thus, keeping content on Jio’s servers will be beneficial for both its D2H and broadband services.
It has been confirmed by Reliance that it has launched its FTTH/Fibre to the Home services in certain locations and will gradually extend the trials to other places over the coming months. It has been speculated that Jio may start its DTH and broadband business at the same time and offer consumers bundled packages. It is also possible that the company may first launch its D2H business and then start its broadband services. In case the DTH service is launched before Jio’s FTTH business, then users may use Jio’s Wi-Fi gadgets or their current broadband connections to connect the Hybrid Jio set top boxes to the internet. It is also possible that Reliance may link the STB to the Jio number of the user and launch new plans. It is also speculated that the STB by Reliance may be GSM enabled.
It is known that Reliance is currently conducting trails of its broadband services in Mumbai. The company is offering a scheme which is similar to its telecom services Welcome Offer to its broadband consumers during the Mumbai testing period. One such plan features a 100 Mbps broadband connection along with 100 GB monthly FUP for free for 3 months. If something similar to the Welcome Offer is also offered by the DTH services of Reliance, then it can be a cause of extreme worry for Airtel and other competitors in the D2H sector. It may be noted that the Airtel Internet TV is available at a price of INR 4,999 along with a limited offer of digital TV subscription for 3 months. Users also have the option of paying INR 7,999 to get Airtel DTH service along with set top box for one year.