I had earlier written an article on the entry of Sun Direct DTH into the DTH space, when they started off in Tamil Nadu. In that article I had compared various players in the DTH space as well. You can find more details about the various DTH players here
Today Sun Direct DTH has started off their services in Karnataka, and particularly in Bengaluru, although they are now singing a different tune than the old "Free set top box + free installation" song! This time they are offering the service for Rs.1999/- (*****) with lots of "conditions apply" buzzword - the jargon meant to indicate everything is not what is indicated in there! If I am probably right, it would only mean an installation charge of Rs.999 extra putting the totals upto Rs.3000/- which is no different from the other existing players.
Interestingly earlier Tata Sky was offering their customers a million minutes free which they have now withdrawn. Instead now they are beginning to capitalize on the kids segment (a segment where the people involved wont take a "NO" from their parents) by saying kids of TATA Sky owners are more brilliant than others- becuase they do mathematical puzzles and play reasoning games on their set top boxes using ACTVE LEARNING.
For once I believe Tata must provide more channels in their boquet rather than all these games before customers assume Tata DTH is only for kids alone in the longer run. Coming back to the Sun Story, note however in the above AD that they still do not disclose the monthly charges which by foresight I assume to be much higher than Rs.150 atleast and not the erstwhile Rs.75 for 75 channels (which is ridiculous since it will eventually bring down their profits like hell).
As usual a call to any of the dealers mentioned in the AD only returns one of these
- The phone you have called is busy, call later
- This call is being diverted to a different number (which probably will never be answered!)
- The service reps are so busy assisting millions of customers that they dont care for another customer like you who will join that queue of never being answered technically speaking
- The worst part of the toll free number for Sun DTH service is that the IVR is in tamil as well making us all feel that we have dialled some Tamil Nadu number, which by coincidence is also true. Atleast Sun could’ve done better putting up that IVR in the respective local languages.
So another day of wasted phone calls to no avail, even to find out details. Perhaps the Sun scheme details are already there on their website, I would’nt care much just because I expect Sun to take atleast a month or more to seriously begin addressing the Karnataka market. Since this is all about pre booking, it means you pay up your hard earned money for equipment that you would get perhaps a month or even six down the line! If Sun has to make boxes for you, you pay up first, they get confirmed orders and perhaps approach a hardware vendor like Flextronics or the likes and place a volume order for those many pre booked number of boxes! From that day your wait starts until you get frustrated.
So its all a wait and watch to see what impact Sun Direct DTH makes in Karnataka, and in particular a cosmopolitan city like Bengaluru.