Streaming service Viu has officially launched in South Africa, offering a wide selection of local and international content.
The platform is developed by PCCW and Vuclip, which uses a hybrid AVOD (Advertising Video On Demand) and premium content model.
It has already been launched in multiple locations including Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, Egypt, Iraq, and Qatar, and locally the service has acquired rights to broadcast SABC and Etv content – in addition to international shows.
Viu added that it has over 30 million active monthly subscribers across the world and aims to continue this success in South Africa.
To find out more about Viu and its plan to compete against the likes of Netflix, MyBroadband spoke to Viu country manager Ryan Solovei.
Breakdown and content
Solovei explained that Viu offers South Africans a locally-focused entertainment bouquet with an attractive pricing model.
“Viu’s unique value proposition of fresh and localised regional and local premium TV shows, movies, and originals entertains millions of consumers every day,” Solovei said.
“Viu Originals bring to light compelling stories with world-class production quality, also providing the opportunity for local talent to showcase their skills on a world stage.”
He added that on Viu, South Africans will find local productions, Pan African shows, Bollywood films and Viu Originals – most of which are developed in Asian markets.
The Viu streaming service can be accessed via the Viu app available on iOS and Android, or via the official website.
Taking on competitors
Solovei said the Viu application included both premium and free content, with users receiving advertisements unless they pay a subscription fee.
“Viu is a free app with Premium content. There are two sections to the Viu platform – free content that is AVOD driven and a premium site with paid-for content,” Solovei said.
When asked whether Viu was positioned as a competitor against major streaming services such as Netflix, DStv Now, and Showmax, Solovei said this was partly true.
However, he said that Viu would be aimed at lower-income markets – which are typically ignored by more established services.
“Viu competes with Netflix in the Asian markets, but the target market in SA is LSM 6 and below, which is traditionally a market that has been ignored by the current OTT players in South Africa,” Solovei said.
“The focus target market for local streaming services has mainly been in the upper LSMs.”