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What's on India: A TV guide on TV
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What’s on India’, a channel founded and promoted by Atul Phadnis, is the viewer’s guide to television. Backed by venture capitalists such as Sequoia Capital and launched in December 2009, it is the first channel dedicated to TV guidance in India. While most viewers have a handful of favourites on TV, What’s on India aims to make sense of programmes in over 200 channels.

The bottom half of the screen on this free-to-air satellite channel may remind you of an electronic programming guide (EPG), the top part of the screen is where Phadnis and his team are lining up their innovations. The channel alternates between genre-wise suggestions and what’s scheduled in the next few minutes across channels. On days when channels replace regular programming with special shows, the channel will be a one-stop guide to the various shows, “enabling discovery of new content,” according to Phadnis.

Content discovery, according to Phadnis, was unmet by newspaper listings (“Close to 100 plus changes are made in channel programming daily”, says Phadnis) and EPGs. Explains Phadnis: “EPGs are present only in 15 per cent of satellite-enabled homes. Even with an EPG, the discovery of content can get tedious with endless scrolling.”

The possibility to generate more interest in what is on TV has also got cable operators and DTH players interested. “For an average TV viewer, there are five to eight channels which comprise 80 per cent of his viewing,” informs Phadnis. So, What’s on India, with its timely indicators and recommendations, can get viewers hooked on to more channel packages provided by the operators, over and above the base packs. Dish TV, Airtel DTH, Hathway and Digicable are some of the platforms that air the channel. Phadnis says the channel has generated demand even among small analogue cable operators in Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Punjab, who are looking to provide their viewers with a programme guide without the need for a set-top box.

Phadnis’ team had cut 12 versions of the channel to test it in large and small towns in the north and south to arrive at an interface that could be launched across India. While highlighting regional programmes, What’s on India works on insights common to these markets. As viewers graduate to digital broadcasting, the choice of channels shoots up and this flummoxes the viewer. The channel is geared towards recommending programmes and it does this across genres that can help a viewer make up his mind.

[Image: logo_08.jpg]

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#2
It is a very good and helpful channel guide, with ever increasing number of channel on the DTH platform a more refined viewing can be decided with this guide.
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