A slew of new HD channels are being launched in India, but most of the major DTH operators like Tata Sky and Airtel are showing no hurry to get them added to their broadcasts.
Last year when HD set top boxes were launched in India, it came as a big joy for people who had HD Tv’s in their homes or where planning to buy one. Watching FIFA World Cup in HD or IPL was a blessing experience. But most DTH operators tried to mint money with HD services instead of actually giving good service to the customers.
With just Discovery and Nat Geo as full time HD channels, DTH operators like Tata Sky made customers who bought the HD set top box look foolish. Consequently, in 2010, HD Set top boxes did not set the market alive as was expected.
In 2011, with the start of IPL, HD broadcast was back on prime-time through Set Max HD. IPL matches looked amazing in HD and more and more people started noticing HD services in India. Times Now launched Movies Now HD was launched as the first 24*7 English Movies HD channel in India and Tata sky then launched Star Movies HD, Star Plas HD and Star Gold HD. With the recent launch of ESPN HD and Star Cricket HD things are now definitely looking much better for HD viewers. Today another HD channel was launched, MTunes HD, which is a full time HD channel for music. A News HD channel is also expected to be launched on 14th Aug.
Despite having HD channels to satisfy all genres now, DTH operators are not doing much to get them added to their services. Operators like Tata Sky still has to add Movies Now HD and ESPN HD. There is no clear information or deadline when new channels will get added.
Even for those behind the channel, it’s weird why they decide to launch a HD channel when they can’t even get a contract done with all DTH providers. Channels like Movies Now HD, ESPN or the recently launched music channel MTunes HD needed to sort their contracts first with all major DTH operators like Tata Sky, Airtel and Reliance. What is the point of launching a HD channel when you can’t broadcast it to your viewers?