MultiChoice may be forced to cut DStv prices in South Africa in 2019 (DST at R899pm vs Netflix at R169pm)
If international trends are anything to go by, MultiChoice will be faced with a difficult decision in 2019 – continue to hike DStv Premium prices and lose even more customers to Netflix, or cut prices and hope it can make a digital-only version of DStv work.
The impact of rising satellite and cable TV subscriptions – the equivalent of DStv Premium in the USA – has seen customers ditch their packages in droves overseas.
The ability to make this decision an easy one is thanks to Netflix and other streaming services like Amazon Prime Video, which offer massive catalogues of content at much lower prices than expensive cable and satellite TV.
According to data published by Variety, the number of people in the US who have cancelled pay-TV services will reach 33 million in 2018 – a 32.8% increase over 2017. The report further stated that the high price of pay-TV is a big reason why this is happening, and the average pay-TV bill in the US was $100 per month.
In South Africa, the situation is not that different.
DStv Premium with the Access Fee is R899 per month, and hundreds of thousands of subscribers have dropped the service in recent years.
Netflix has also played a part locally, following its official launch in SA at the start of 2016. Even MultiChoice has admitted that Netflix is hurting its DStv Premium subscriber numbers.
And at R169 per month for the top Netflix package, it is easy to see why.
The real fact is consumers have adjusted their viewing habits according to more modern trends and they have more options now. Even if DSTV was half the price I doubt I'd go back to a model where I must watch something at a specific time of the day.
|MultiChoice may be forced to cut DStv prices in 2019
If international trends are followed in South Africa, DStv Premium is set to die at the hands of Netflix.