DStv vs Openview big channel changes in the last 3 years

Despite the price of its Premium package increasing from R809 to R839 in the past three years, DStv has dropped more than double the number of channels it has added.

In stark contrast, its satellite TV rival Openview has had a net addition of channels during the same period.

DStv regularly revises its channel offering based on broadcasting licencing negotiations, viewership research, and what it determines offers the best value to its viewers.

In the first five months of 2022 alone, the broadcaster cut seven channels and lost another one due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Among these, the broadcaster removed four E-tv channels, provoking a challenge from the channels’ owner, eMedia.

It took DStv’s parent MultiChoice to the Competition Tribunal to try and force it to keep carrying the channels.

eMedia argued that MultiChoice’s actions amounted to a refusal to sell a service and claimed that their channels’ presence on DStv contributed 21.9% of eMedia’s advertising revenue.

But MultiChoice told the Commission it had limited satellite capacity and would only have space for 11 channels after dropping the four eTV channels.

It maintained the decision was based on advancing its commercial interests.

The broadcaster also pointed out that eMedia broadcasts the channels on Openview, which had a growing customer base.

The Tribunal ruled in favour of MultiChoice.

DStv vs Openview

MyBroadband looked at the channels DStv and Openview have added and removed over the last three years.

According to our analysis of announcements relating to channel changes, DStv dropped 18 channels and added nine as of early June 2022.

By mid-July, it would have dropped two more channels — iTV and FliekNET.

That means it will offer 11 fewer channels than it did at the start of 2019.

Even when ignoring channel reshuffles, such as DStv merging the content of two channels, and discounting the loss of Russia Today due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict, the number of dropped channels would be 15.

During the same period, Openview chopped seven channels but added 10, meaning it currently has three more channels than it did at the start of 2019.

Its most recent additions were Afrikaans channel ePlesier and The Home Channel +.

Openview subscribers also don’t have to pay a monthly subscription fee like DStv customers.

Instead, they pay a once-off fee, typically around R1,499, for the dish, decoder, and installation.

The table below shows the channels added and removed from DStv and Openview between 2019 and 2022.

DStv vs Openview channel changes — 2019 to 2022
DStv Openview
Added CBS Justice — 21 November 2019
CuriosityStream —
21 November 2019
ESPN —
29 July 2020
ESPN2 — 29 July 2020
FliekNet —
1 September 2020
Me — 1 November 2021
TvN — 1 March 2021
Dreamworks
— 18 March 2022
KIX — 31 March 2022
France24 — 1 August 2020
DBE TV — 1 April 2020
SA Music — 4 December 2020
Soul Music — 4 December 2020
People’s Weather — 14 December 2020
SABC Sport — 15 April 2021
Zee One — 1 November 2021
eXposed
— 4 April 2022
ePlesier — 18 April 2022
The Home Channel+ — 16 May 2022
Total additions 9 10
Dropped Crime and Investigation — 1 November 2019
SABC Encore —
1 June 2020
Sundance —
1 June 2020
ITV Choice —
4 June 2020
BBC First —
1 September 2020
M-Net Movies Smile —
1 September 2020
M-Net Movies Action —
1 September 2020
Disney XD —
1 October 2020
Fox Life —
1 October 2020
Fox —
1 October 2021
Mnet City — 1 November 2021
Vuzu —
1 November 2021
Lifetime
 – 1 May 2022
eMovies – 1 July 2022
eMovies Extra – 1 July 2022
eExtra – 1 July 2022
eToonz – 1 July 2022
RT – 2 March 2022
iTV — 17 June 2022
FliekNET — 15 July 2022
KruisKyk — 2 May 2019
Trace Sports Stars —
14 May 2019
Kwesè Free Sports —
28 July 2019
BBC World News — 1 August 2020
Fight Sports — 29 October 2020
eRewind
— 1 April 2022
eNews & Sports — 1 April 2022
Total cuts 20 7
Net loss/gain -11 +3

Now read: ANC wants to ban DStv’s exclusive sports broadcasting rights

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DStv vs Openview big channel changes in the last 3 years