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Tata Sky launches video service for PCs

Online content subscription services have competition: DTH provider Tata Sky has launched its on-demand video service Everywhere TV, for laptops and desktops as well, although it’s available only on Windows 8 as of now. Tata Sky websites suggests that a Mac OS app is in the works.

Prior to this launch, Everywhere TV was available only on smart-phones and tablets (iOS and Android devices). Note that the company hasn’t disclosed the number of subscribers using Everywhere TV; the number might not be significant enough. Tata Sky replaced its mobile app with one that integrated Everywhere TV, so the “1,000,000 – 5,000,000″ number of downloads on the Google Play store isn’t indicative of usage.

Screen Shot 2014-06-12 at 1.57.48 pm

Everywhere TV has over 65 live channels, but viewers can only stream those channels they are subscribed to on Tata Sky. They also stream 5 days archival content from TV shows, and have Video on Demand. The service is priced at Rs 60 per month per device, or Rs 325 for 6 months and Rs 600 for a year.

Ditto TV* is next? Dish TV had beaten Tata Sky to the mobile launch, and now Tata Sky is on the desktop first. Dish TV will be sure to follow soon. Airtel also has Pocket TV, powered by Digi Vive.

Our Take

Why would you buy this? It’s an additional Rs 60 per month, and with limited access to content. It makes no sense subscribing to this service just for catch-up TV, since, for most shows, content is likely to be available on YouTube or a subscription service like Box TV, Spuul and others. In fact, this is an opportunity for TV channels to put one over DTH providers – there’s no love lost between two, because of the arm twisting that goes on because of carriage fees. Something like Everywhere TV only works when someone wants another device with the same content at a nominal cost, without having to buy another TV. Tata Sky’s potential base is limited to its existing base, since its an add-on on top of the DTH service.

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Also, it is not clear why Tata Sky decided to create an app for desktop instead of making it a web app. For example, though Star Sports has mobile apps, the same service is available for subscribers via a website. The complexity of Everywhere TV might be many fold in comparison to Star Sports, but most of the features that a local app provides, can be offered via the web as well. We wonder if the company plans to offer a web version of their service in the future.

Disclosure: India.com, an Essel Group company is an advertiser with MediaNama. The Essel Group also owns Ditto TV and Dish TV.

Written By

Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

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