The next 18 months in South African TV Broadcasting is going to be an exceptionally eventful time thanks to the changes that Streaming TV are bringing to the country. The biggest beneficiaries to this process however are going to be us the average SA consumer!
The trigger for this very abrupt change in the way people are going to view TV can be traced back to Netflix, who just earlier this year confirmed that they will be launching in South Africa by the end of 2016. This announcement triggered a surprising turn of events, as NASPERS announced shortly afterwards that it would be launching its local Netflix rival ShowMax. This video-on-demand (VOD) service is now available to all South Africans with internet access at a very accessible price of R99 per month.
What Does This Mean for SA?
Simply put, this demand for streaming TV is going to increase the need for top level high speed internet providers to ensure that local viewers enjoy their VOD services at internationally accepted standards. Because of this, as speedier broadband comes to the suburbs, streaming is going to become an extremely viable alternative to the more expensive Digital Satellite TV (DStv) option.
How Will Watching VOD Affect Your Internet Use?
The minimum advertised internet connection speed for each individual service may differ, but according to Netflix their streaming service needs to use 0.5 megabits per second. However Netflix also says that viewers may want to think about getting a faster connection if they would like to enjoy improved video-on-demand quality. According to the Netflix website this is because they need to “stream a little bit of data as a buffer each time a customer starts a movie or TV show”. Ultimately this means that there will be even greater pressure on South African internet providers to provide a fast, yet cost effective internet solution and we will see a massive spike in internet use across all levels of income groups in the country.