Competition in the digital TV space is getting tougher by the day and this forces the industry players to be innovative. Startimes is one such company that is keen on this introducing new products and services. The company yesterday introduced two advanced decoders into the Kenyan market.
The two new Startimes decoders are referred to as Startimes light decoders. One of the decoders is a standard Definition (SD) decoder while the other one is a High Definition (HD) decoder. I happened to see both these decoders and I have to say they look really nice. In a market filled with some ‘weird looking’ decoders, these new ones from Startimes bring in a new look to the market.
Both the HD and SD decoders look the same on the outside in terms of design. They have a simplistic appearance with not much going on making them appealing to the eyes. The decoders are also very slim and light and are quite small compared to most decoders you can find on the market.
The new Standards Definition decoder from Startimes is retailing at Ksh 199 while the HD decoder goes for Ksh 999. After buying either the SD or HD decoder, you will be required to pay a subscription fee of Ksh 1,500 for a bouquet of your choice. With the subscription fee paid, you will have the option of accessing 10 months Nyota bouquet, 3 months Basic bouquet and a half month classic or 1 month unique bouquet.
Startimes Vice president for Marketing Mr. Mark Losboa said that the company is keen to provide Kenyans with affordable and quality set top boxes as well as providing rich content. With Startimes decoders, viewers are able to access over 55 free to air local channels with a few extra channels they subscribe for.
For those who will want to get the new Startimes Light Full HD decoder, there are currently 2 HD channels already broadcasting. One is the NBA TV while the other one is the Star Bollywood channel. Startimes has said that it will add extra HD channels as time goes by.
The new decoders offer multi-lingual support with options for Kiswahili, English, French and Portuguese. With this, you will be able to choose the language you are comfortable with. A few other features you can find on these new decoders include; parental control to block channels that have parental advisory,
They also have the new Auto Tune feature that allows subscribers to set up to 32 program reminders. With this, you will be able to set the decoder to automatically tune to a certain channel when a certain program starts. This is a cool feature that has been available on most other decoders on the market.
In concluding, Startimes revealed that it has seen decoder uptake grow and the company expects even better growth as the final phase of the digital migration on 30th March 2015.
My Take on the Decoders
These two new decoders represent a new phase for Startimes, a company that has seen serious competition in the market. Startimes’ minimalistic approach to decoders got my attention and I will definitely have to use the decoders for a while to see if they offer something good. At this point, I would advice Startimes to increase the number of HD channels to give users a better experience.