Multichoice has been betting on its streaming service to turn the company around and stake a claim to Africa’s streaming pie. Now it has launched another streaming product, DStv Stream.
Multichoice has announced DStv Stream, a service which will replace the streaming platform which has hitherto been called just “DStv”, formerly known as “DStv Now”. The platform, a mobile app, will offer profiles, account information, viewing history, watch lists, downloads, Catch-Up, BoxOffice and live TV.
According to the company, with DStv Stream, customers can discover content through better personalisation, enjoy a smoother and simpler streaming experience, as well as change audio soundtracks to their local language where available. This includes live sports commentary in isiZulu, isiXhosa, Portuguese, Afrikaans, and English.
“From the initial launch of the first decoder to pioneering digital satellite TV and now with DStv Stream, what drives innovation for us, is providing our customers with the content they love, in the way that’s best for them,” said Marc Jury, CEO of MultiChoice South Africa.
Multichoice continuing aggressive push into streaming
The launch of DStv Stream follows the trend of Multichoice making significant investments in its streaming products.
In its annual results for the year ended 31 March 2023, Multichoice announced that it would withhold dividends from shareholders in order to continue investing in Showmax, the company’s other streaming bet.
“In view of the challenging South African market, the uncertain currency outlook, the funding needs of the Rest of Africa business and the investment required to drive Showmax to become the leading streaming platform on the continent, no dividend has been declared for FY23,” the company stated.
In April, Multichoice announced a partnership with US media giant COMCAST, owners of NBCUniversal, and its UK counterpart SKY to create “Showmax 2.0” which would be a new platform powered by Peacock and 70% owned by Multichoice and 30% (sold for $30 million) owned by the aforementioned UK and US partners.
On paper, leveraging Peacock’s “scalable and feature-rich technology”, Multichoice’s wide array of local content combined with global content from its partners, Showmax 2.0 would give top global streaming platforms on the continent like Netflix and Disney+, as well as African platforms like Wi-flix, a run for their money.
The platform is slated to go live in the second half of the 2024 financial year.