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Update: Star India urges Airtel Digital subscribers to switch - Printable Version

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Star India urges Airtel Digital subscribers to switch - nairrk - 03-24-2018

MUMBAI: The slugfests were bound to happen in TV distribution. The time for agreement renewal is nigh between distribution platform operators and broadcasters with content contracts coming to an end. The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (TRAI) proposed  tariff  and interconnection agreements are being passed  around from the High Court of Chennai to the Supreme Court and back without any resolution.

Earlier this month, the Star Network issued a disconnection notice to one of India’s better-managed DTH operators Airtel Digital in an announcement that made waves in TV distribution circles.  Now, with the spat between the two continuing, India’s leading TV network has taken the fight to Airtel’s camp.

It has started a digital campaign-for now at least-asking the DTH player’s subscribers to switch to other distribution platforms. Says the network on its Twitter handle: “Attention Airtel Digital  subscribers! Star has not increased channel tariffs. Airtel Digital TV  is misleading you and unilaterally increasing the prices of Star channels. To continue watching high quality Star entertainment switch to new DTH/cable operator now.”

Attention Airtel Digital TV subscribers! Star has not increased channel tariffs. Airtel Digital TV is misleading you and unilaterally increasing the prices of Star channels. To continue watching high-quality Star entertainment switch to new DTH/Cable operator NOW. #MakeTheSwitch pic.twitter.com/ny8LmmDmdF

— Star TV Network (@starindia) March 23, 2018


The digital  video,  which is doing the rounds on social media, has a voiceover that states: “You used to pay Rs 200 for the HD pack on Airtel. Now why are you being charged Rs 1,000? You can still get the same price for the same HD channels at around Rs 200! Change to another service provider. To get Star channels in a packet, make the switch.

The video then lists operators like DEN, Fastway, SUN, Hathway, GTPL and Tata Sky that Airtel subscribers can opt for.

We will have to wait and watch how Airtel responds to this direct attack. Will it buckle and give into the rates that Star India is asking for? Or will it hold firm and wait to see if the broadcaster will blink first?

After all, Star has a lot at stake with the IPL coming up in the next fortnight. And it has to recover the humungous amounts it is pumping into the most prized cricketing property globally!

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