Nine crore out of a total of 17 crore TV homes in India have switched to TRAI’s new framework for DTH and cable channels, which came into effect on February 1 this year. Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Chairman R S Sharma told PTI that out of these nine crore TV homes, 6.5 crore are cable TV homes while 2.5 crore are DTH homes.
“Out of the total 17 crore TV homes (which includes 7 crore DTH homes and 10 crore cable TV homes), about nine crore homes have already registered their choice with the operators, which is a big number,” Sharma told the news agency.
TRAI’s new rules require DTH and cable TV subscribers to choose their own monthly channels or packs. The new framework has also got people confused over the selection process, fee, etc. To handle this, the regulatory body has said it will take up consumer outreach and awareness programmes through social media, advertisements, and more.
Last week, it clarified that the network capacity fee (NCF) is not mandatory for subscribers who own more than one TV connection in a household. The NCF is Rs 130 along with 18 per cent GST, which comes to around Rs 153.
The new framework is aimed at reducing the monthly TV bill by giving subscribers the freedom to choose channels they want to watch and only pay for those channels. While many consumers have reported a decrease in their monthly TV bill, a large number of consumers feel it has only escalated the bill amount.
As per a CRISIL report, TRAI’s new regime could increase the monthly bill of most subscribers of television channels, but benefit popular channels and OTT platforms like Netflix, Hotstar. The analysis by CRISIL points out that the monthly TV bill can go up by 25 per cent from Rs 230-Rs 240 to Rs 300 per month for viewers when one looks at the current pricing.
This is based on the assumption that subscribers opt for the top 10 channels by viewership in addition to the free-to-air (FTA) channels. The monthly bill for those who select up to top five channels will go down.
With PTI inputs