DSTV and GOTV users were welcomed into the new week with a message that Multichoice was going to adjust its subscription price for both platforms with effect from 1st of August 2018. According to the text messages sent out to its users, South African Multichoice plans to slash the subscription price on its terrestrial platform, GOtv, while increasing prices on its digital satellite platform, DStv. This is the sixth time DSTV will be increasing its subscription fee in Nigeria since its inception in 2009.
From the information made available by the South African company, subscribers on GOtv Max package will enjoy a reduction from N3,800 to N3,200 while the prices on GOtv Plus, GOtv Value and GOtv Lite packages remain fixed at N1,900, N1,250 and N400 respectively. The subscribers on DStv Premium package will see a price increase from N14,700 to N15,800; Compact Plus from N9,900 to N10,650; Compact from N6,300 to N6,800; Family from N3,800 to N4,000 and on Access, N1,900 to N2,000.
Multichoice which has an arbitrary history of increasing price last year blamed the increase in subscription on a spike in inflation rate and Forex restriction in the country. However, as of last year, the issue of Forex restriction was no news to people because that was the problem of almost every company doing business in Nigeria using foreign currency. But recently that issue seems to have been under control by the Central Bank of Nigeria. This year, Multichoice has blamed the increase on a spike in inflation but it is worthy to note that the inflation rate as at May 2017 when it last increased its subscription stood at 17.11 percent but as at June 2018 Nigeria’s inflation rate stands at 11.61 percent.
Over the years, MultiChoice Africa Limited, which offers video entertainment services in Africa through its digital satellite television service, DSTV, has been under constant attack by Nigerians either over subscription fees or content. Last year a lot of Nigerians felt robbed by this pay TV and its activities in the country due to its monopoly on certain programmes such as the English Premiership League rights. They have also been under attack by Nigerians on social media during the ongoing World Cup tournament over poor quality services because when it rains DSTV service go off until the rain reduces.
In 2016, the Premier League announced that it had closed a deal valid for the 2016/17 and 2018/19 seasons with Econet Media, owned by a Zimbabwean tycoon, Strive Masiyiwa. When this announcement was made people thought that they would be a huge competitor for DSTV when they enter the Nigerian market but unfortunately Kwese TV which is owned by Zimbabwean business tycoon came into the Nigerian market last year. Apart from Kwese TV another Pay TV company known as TSTV also entered the Nigerian market and promised to offer better services than DSTV by making use of the internet.
With the entrant of these companies last year Nigerians hope that they will be able to stand the test of time by being a strong competitor for DSTV which has enjoyed so many years of Monopoly in the Nigerian market.