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Subscribers suffer with Tata Sky and Sony at loggerheads

Akshaj Sinha
ANALYST
News
772   //    03 Oct 2018, 16:41 IST

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Sony and Tata Sky have locked horns on the battlefield

What's the Story?

Millions of TV viewers across India have been in distress over the last couple of days as Direct to Home (DTH) service provider Tata Sky has officially taken down all Sony channels from their platform, The Economic Times claims.

In case you didn't know...

Sony Pictures Networks (SPN) contractual deal with Tata Sky had expired on July 31 earlier this year and ever since, both the parties have been working on a new agreement.

However, the duo have failed to land at a mutual understanding due to differences in pricing and hence, Tata Sky has decided to remove all Sony channels off the air.

The Heart of the Matter

This includes all the sports channels also being takedown by Tata Sky and this has left a huge void among the sports viewers, as they will miss out on all the latest sporting action until this issue is resolved.

Due to these problems, fans have been unable to watch the UEFA Champions League matches as well as the latest WWE episodes of Monday Night RAW and Smackdown LIVE. Similarly, Tata Sky subscribers have been vocal on social media lately and are demanding clarity from the DTH operator.

Sports fans and subscribers, alike, have been suffering due to these ongoings as they have already paid for these channels in their subscription but now have been deprived of watching their favourite content.

In spite of their ongoing war, the DTH provider has, nevertheless, still held onto some popular sports channels, namely, Sony Ten 1, Sony Ten 1 HD, Sony Ten 2 HD and Sony Ten 3. Although, Tata Sky is not the only one who has been dealing with problems from SPN over the last couple of months.

OTT platforms such as Airtel TV and Jio TV have also not been airing the content of SPN Sports over the last couple of weeks on their mobile apps. Initially, Tata Sky had also taken the same step about last week by disconnecting all the Sony sports channels on their Android and iOS app before their major announcement this week.

What's Next?

Tata Sky still owns the right to provide its audience with the above-mentioned programming and if the subscribers want to access, all he/she needs to do is give a missed call to a specific number and the channels will be reinstated on their set-top box.

Although, this short-term solution seems to have been a failure thus far as countless users have been unable to get in touch with the Tata Sky Helpline due to the line being busy or not reachable on utmost occasions.

With this battle between Tata Sky and SPN set to continue, the sports enthusiasts in India will be the biggest losers. The fans will be in danger of missing out on weekly live content such as NBA, La Liga, Serie A, WWE, etc and furthermore, cricket fanatics might miss out on India's tour of Australia in November if the situation remains unresolved heading into next month.

However, Sony does make all of its sporting content available on the Sony LIV app but this may not resort well with their subscribers on a long-term basis. This is more than likely to cause an even bigger uproar among them if they are not able to watch the channels they have already subscribed and paid for until a permanent fix is found in the next coming days or weeks.

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Akshaj Sinha
ANALYST
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