Hathway launches DVR service

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | March 16, 2009
The service will allow subscribers to record one channel while watching another

Hathway Cable & Datacom, which provides analog and digital cable services across India, has launched its digital video recording (DVR) service.

The service allows subscribers to record a programme on one channel while watching another. They can also pause, rewind and fast forward recorded content. The technology for the service has been provided by NDS, a leading company for pay TV solutions.

So far, the only other service provider offering DVR is direct to home (DTH) service provider Tata Sky, while Big TV and Airtel digital TV have plans to offer it, too. Thus, Hathway is the first cable company in India to provide DVR.

"With the launch of DVR, Hathway will deliver a whole new viewing experience, variety of content and on-demand digital television to its viewers," says K Jayaraman, managing director and chief executive officer, Hathway.

The set top box for DVR will cost Rs 9,999 and the service will come at a cost of Rs 50 per month.

"Hathway's NDS XTV-powered DVR will radically change the way cable subscribers view and use content in India. This is the first step towards a fully converged service that will offer broadband TV and a suite of next generation solutions to Indian viewers," says Sue Taylor, senior vice-president and general manager, Asia Pacific, NDS, in a statement.

DVR as a technology is yet to catch on with the Indian consumers. The main reason for this is that the cost of the set top box is at least three times more than the basic set top box. Secondly, a digital connection in the form of CAS or DTH is required for this service, which is still growing in India.

A research study by Magna Global USA shows that less than one-fourth of all households having TVs in the USA have DVRs, but they account for 9 per cent of the TV ratings of major networks and 15 per cent of viewing by adults in the age group 18-49 years.

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