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DTH industry hit hard as rupee depreciates
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The hardening of the dollar against the rupee has impacted direct-to-home (DTH) operators adversely because they are having to offer set-top boxes (STB) at subsidised rates despite a 10-15 per cent increase in prices at which STBs are imported.

"The prices have gone up by almost 10-15 per cent because of the dollar rates... This has put further pressure on us," Dish TV Chief Operating Officer Salil Kapoor told reporters here on the sidelines of a conference here.

Due to dollar appreciation, the hardware especially the set-top boxes which are imported from other countries, has become costlier. Therefore, despite service duty reduction the DTH players have not benefited much.

Operators, in a bid to increase their subscriber base, often end up offering these STBs at subsidised rates, thus further elevating the costs and leading to losses.

Voicing similar opinion, Tata Sky Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Vikram Kaushik said, "The DTH industry can face massive losses in the years to come on account of low average revenues per user (ARPU) and also the duty that each service provider has to pay while importing hardware."

The rupee has depreciated about 5.75 per cent from January to today's level of Rs 51.49/51 a dollar.

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