MUMBAI: Tata Sky reportedly is offering consumers of Reliance Digital TV a limited time offer till middle of November 2017 to migrate to its platform at no extra cost. Reason: Reliance is not renewing its DTH licence that expires in November 2017.
Though no official confirmations are forthcoming from any of the companies involved, a message being flashed on TV sets of consumers of Reliance Digital TV informs people to call a designated number or give a missed-call after which the consumer receives a call back from its new DTH service provider.
The message mentions a number 9237092370 that has to be called. When the number was called by this reporter, a recorded message said, “Thank you for showing interest in Tata Sky. We will get in touch with you within 72 hours.”
According to a possible deal hammered out between the two companies, Tata Sky will offer to Reliance consumers a mechanism involving installation of free STBs and dish antennas for a painless migration in an offer that is valid till 18 November 2017.
Tata Sky is also promising the approximately one million Reliance Digital TV consumers — mostly pre-paid — their Reliance credit money will be transferred to the new Tata Sky accounts.
However, industry sources indicated that India’s first private sector DTH operator Dish TV too has, reportedly, told its distributors that any Reliance Digital TV consumer who has not migrated to a competitor’s platform should be targeted for acquisition after paying that consumer a one-time fee of approximately Rs. 1,000. Dish TV is in the process of amalgamating the ops of Videocon d2h DTH with itself pending some regulatory clearances.
Few days back Reliance Communications, parent of Reliance Digital TV, had informed Bombay Stock Exchange: “DTH operation is a non-core business of the company provided through Reliance BigTV Limited (RBTV), a subsidiary of the Company. RBTV’s DTH license is expiring by end of November 2017and the company is currently working with three leading DTH operators for seamless migration of customers to enjoy uninterrupted services”.
Whether some regulatory clearances by other satellite TV operators in India need to be taken for customer acquisition of soon-to-be-shuttered DTH ops of Reliance is not yet clear.
When we talked with regulator TRAI and Ministry of Information and Broadcasting last week, officials at both the organizations said they were unaware of Reliance Digital TV’s future plans and also the reason as to why it was not renewing its DTH licence as no official communications had been received by them till then.