Monica Bagrecha

Tata Sky to edutain kids with ‘Actve Wizkids’

The service lets kids learn with fun while parents get control over their learning process. The new service will educate and entertain kids while letting parents supervise and moderate viewing. A month after its launch, the satellite television service has 75 channels, including seven interactive services

Progressing further in its brand promise of offering choice, control and convenience to viewers, Tata Sky Ltd has launched Actve Wizkids. This is the seventh interactive service from its stable after having in its bouquet 75 television channels, including seven interactive services.

Vikram Kaushik, MD and CEO, Tata Sky Ltd, says, “This is in line with our initiative to provide wider entertainment options. The service has received tremendous response from both the fronts – consumers as well as trade.” He claims the service is a prototype in its sphere worldwide. The interactive educational games service aims at extending classroom learning into homes.

The Parental Control and Actve Wizkids services are customised to provide protected edutainment to children. The service, tailored for kids in the three-six age group, is said to make learning a fun-filled process. At the same time, it places the necessary control in the hand of parents. Care has been taken to ensure that the content is appropriate with respect to age, duration of viewing, interest factor and parental norms.

This will include games, audio instructions and animated mascots. The games will cover subjects from mathematics to English to general knowledge. The remote control that comes with the other hardware will be used for the games. The channel has come out with four mascots that the children can relate to for better understanding.

The Parental Control service will empower parents to regulate what their children watch on television. This not only allows an entire channel to be blocked out, but also allows blocking of movies based on parental ratings across channels For instance, parents can block out movies considered unsuitable for children below the age of 15 years.

The service is the by-product of efforts of an in-house team at Tata Sky in consultation with an eminent educationist. Also, before doling out the new service, requisite research was conducted to assess parents’ feedback and suggestions. There were three key findings. First, there is acceptance by children of moderation in television viewing; second, parents want education as well as entertainment for their kids and; third and most important, parents want control over what and for how long their kids watch television.

Kaushik stresses the superiority of the service compared to computer-based games owing to the relatively lower penetration of computers in homes. Besides, television is a more convenient and economic alternative for parents to supplement their children’s classroom education in an fun-filled manner. Also, daily refreshing of the games available on the service is easier than buying educational CDs from time to time.

Tata Sky has tied up with IL&FS Educational & Technology Services Ltd in a 360-degree approach to take the Actve Wizkids philosophy to other pre-primary products such as books, flashcards and posters.

Prior to these services, Tata Sky other interactive services are Actve STAR News, Actve Khabar (with four different Hindi news channels), Actve News Room (with four different English news channels), Actve Games (featuring interactive computer games like Aliens and Trance) andActve Sports and Guide.

Launched only on August 8, the service has widened its network to 3,200 cities.With this addition to its platform, Kaushik avers that Tata Sky is wholesome for the whole family. For the record, Tata Sky Ltd, is an 80:20 joint venture between the Tata and STAR Groups. The company hopes to reach a subscriber base of one million in its first year of operation.

© 2006 agencyfaqs!

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