DTH, Cable TV Channels Selection Process: Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Chairman R S Sharma has said that strict action will be taken against cable TV and DTH players who are found violating its new tariff order for cable and DTH companies, which came into effect on February 1, 2019.
Sharma told news agency PTI that TRAI received complaints of distributors restricting the choice of channels to push packs and bouquets, which he added, is not the spirit of the regulatory framework.
Watch: How to choose your channels
However, there has been some confusion over TRAI’s new rules and choosing channels. To handle this, TRAI introduced Best Fit plan, which was activated automatically by the telecom provider for those users who have had not confirmed their channel choice to operators until the deadline of March 31.
Subscribers for whom the Best Fit plans were automatically activated should note that these can be modified as well. One can choose their own individual channels or curated packs and bouquets by their service provider. Still, for those who are still confused, here are key points to note for choosing channels under TRAI’s new rules and calculating overall TV bill:
• The Network Capacity Fee (NCF) is Rs 130+18 per cent GST for 100 channels, which comes to around Rs 153.
• For more than 100 channels, subscribers will be charged extra NCF of Rs 20 per 25 channels.
• The 100 channels list can include paid channels, charges for which will be extra, as well as free channels.
• The 25 free DD channels are already there in the pack, which cannot be removed.
• So, for instance, for those who choose 150 channels, their NCF will be Rs 130 (plus 18 per cent GST) + 20 + 20 + the cost of paid channels.
• Price of paid channels starts from as low as 0.50 paise per month, while the maximum price of a channel has been limited to Rs 19.
• For paid channels, do keep in mind that one HD (Hogh Definition) channel will count as 2 SD (Standard Definition) channels.
• So, for those who choose 10 HD channels in their list of 100, then it will actually be 80 channels, because 10HD=20SD channels.
• One can also choose regional packs or monthly packs curated by operators, instead of selecting individual channels and creating their own entirely pack from scratch.
A CRISIL report claimed that under the new TRAI guidelines the monthly bill of most subscribers of television channels could increase. However, Sharma refuted the report and said that initial data from broadcasters shows that bills have gone down by 10-15 per cent in metros and 5-10 per cent in non-metros.