If you're thinking of bidding goodbye to the neighbourhood cable operator once Direct-to-Home (DTH) broadcasting service is in place, think again. Having claimed earlier that DTH won't capture a big marketshare in India, cable operators are now eyeing a larger slice of the DTH pie. The new mantra: DTH is not a threat, but an opportunity. Cable operators are keen on being the intermediaries in the DTH platform. But that will be possible only if the DTH service providers want intermediaries.
Meanwhile, irrespective of whether DTH service providers want intermediaries or not, cable operators are gearing up to be a part of the DTH network. Says Ms Roop Sharma, president, Cable Operators' Federation of India, that cable operators would definitely get into marketing of DTH. Cable operators, she says, have a role to play in distribution, installation, and dealership of hardware, marketing, collection of monthly charges and after-sales service in the DTH platform.
The process, in case cable operators are part of the DTH system, will be something like this: Customers would contact cable operators for getting a DTH connection, cable operators collect the money from subscribers for the dish installation and forward it to the service provider, cable operators would make the installations at the subscribers' home, and cable operators would resolve the technical problems at the users' end. Clearly, from confrontation, the cable industry is moving to collaboration on DTH.