Rebecca Hawkes | 20-09-2013
OpenView HD, a new direct-to-home (DTH) satellite TV service for South Africa, has announced 15 October as the date for its 16-channel launch and in so doing has created friction with the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC).
Operated by Platco Digital, OpenView HD will offer free access to the channels once viewers have purchased a set-top box and installed a satellite dish at a one-off cost of around SAR1,600.
Platco Digital proclaimed that HD channels from the SABC would form part of the OpenView HD bouquet. However, the SABC has angrily retorted that it "does not have any agreement with the newly launched satellite television service" and claims OpenView HD is "misleading the public".
"We will not allow anyone to use the SABC's name falsely to advance their business interests," Hlaudi Motsoeneng, acting chief operating officer, SABC is quoted as saying by Channel 24.
SABC channels will be carried instead on Sentech's new DTH satellite TV platform Freeview from the end of September, the public broadcaster added.
South Africa's other free-to-air broadcaster e.tv is, however, to roll out its new channels – eKasi+, eToonz+, eMovies+ and eAfrica+ channels – on the new OpenView HD platform.
Afrikaans channel ASTV and Muslim channel Deen TV, previously only available on TopTV, will also form part of the OpenView HD package, along with the new English-language Bollywood channel Zest TV.
Other OpenView HD channels include educational channels Mindset Learning, Da Vinci Learning and English Club; and religious channels Spirit World Ministries and Inspiration TV.