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DStv (Digital Satellite Television) is a Sub-Saharan African direct broadcast satellite service owned by MultiChoice. The service launched in 1995 and provides multiple channels and services to their subscribers, which currently number around 11.9 million. The majority of subscribers are in South Africa and Nigeria, with Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Eswatini (formerly Swaziland), São Tomé and Príncipe, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe additionally served by the company.
|Headquarters||Ferndale, Randburg, South Africa|
|Sub-Saharan Africa (Africa excluding North Africa & Somalia)|
In 1986 pay-television came to South Africa when an analogue, single-channel service, M-Net, was launched by Naspers. For almost seven years, all of M-Net's operations were handled by a single company until 1993 when a second subsidiary company, Multichoice, was created by Naspers. The decoder sales, subscriber services, account management and other business-related matters were handled by Multichoice.
In 1995 a new digital satellite service in South Africa was announced by Multichoice and on 6 October 1995 DStv was officially activated to subscribers. The original selection of channels included M-Net, SABC , MGM, TNT, Sci-Fi Universal, SuperSport, ESPN, Cartoon Network, BBC World News, CNN International and Sky News among others.
This was followed by the launch of new services including: W4 Eutelsat satellite with Ku-band services to sub-Saharan Africa and the Indian Ocean Islands in 2000, Interactive Television in 2002, Dual View decoder in 2003, and the DStv PVR decoder and DStv Compact in 2005.
DStv's own high definition broadcasts, viewed via the HD PVR decoder were launched in 2008. This year also saw the introduction of the XtraView Decoder and the M-NET HD channel.
In 2010 DVB over IP (Digital Video Broadcast over Internet Protocol) and DStv on Demand services were launched. The HD PVR 2P decoder was launched in the same year and M-NET Movies 1 HD was broadcast for the first time. DStv BoxOffice (a movie on demand service) and DStv Mobile were launched in 2011.
In 2018, across Sub-Saharan Africa there were 13.5 million DStv subscribers with 7 million in South Africa alone. The number of DStv PVR decoders reached 1.4 million in that year.
Channels and bouquetsEdit
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DStv airs more than 200 television and audio/radio stations. The list of channels differs in various regions around Sub-Saharan Africa. There are six bouquets, each with a different price range, and two add-on packages for Indian and Portuguese channels.
The low-end package which includes movies (TNT, M-Net Movies Zone, eMovies, etc.), reality (RealTime, CBS Reality, TLC, etc.) cartoons (Cartoon Network, Disney Junior, etc), local music, religion, sport updates and audio channels.
A family-orientated package with a mix of channels.
The mid-range tier from DStv. It is the most popular of all bouquets, due to the content from Mzansi Magic, BET and MTV, local and international soccer, live WWE wrestling and international music.
DStv Compact Plus
Previously DStv Extra, includes Comedy Central, 1Magic and international series.
Like DStv Compact, viewers get access to JOOX and a wider choice of live channels on DStv Now.
DStv has their set-top boxes manufactured by domestic company Altech UEC, along with Arris International. The choice of boxes include a standard box with "XtraView" capabilities, an older personal video recorder, and the newest PVR box known as the Explora. An additional decoder known as the Drifta (discontinued) allows the conversion of a DStv DVB-H signal to another digital device such as a laptop, tablet or smartphone for portable in-home viewing.
DStv also offers the mobile app, DStv Now for mobile and tablet devices, along with PC to control DVRs and parental controls and allow access to recorded content and video on demand services.
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