TV channels and set-top box players are facing a tough challenge from streaming players in most countries, and even in India, people are now willing to cut the cord.
But in an interesting move, Tata Sky has joined hands with Amazon for a special edition of Fire TV stick, which will offer other streaming platforms like Hotstar and let you access TV shows that are a week old.
All this is being made available to existing Tata Sky subscribers for Rs 249 per month. This will get them the device and access to OTT platforms, all paid via a single fee. It does sound promising, but going through the fine print divulges more details about this pack, how it works and what are the benefits that a Tata Sky user can avail.
Since this pack uses a Fire TV stick, it’s possible to access content on any TV that has a HDMI port. Tata Sky has designed an app called Tata Sky Binge for this offering, which will be made available for a rental of Rs 249 monthly.
Instead of signing up and paying for multiple streaming platforms, the Tata Sky Binge allows you to pay for apps like Hotstar, Eros Now and SunNext among others through this rental. Tata Sky claims you don’t have to pay anything extra for the Fire TV stick, but if you don’t pay the rental amount (fixed), this special service won’t work for the user.
The company claims you can use the Fire TV stick on other TVs outside your home, while you have the activated set-top box at home.
The other interesting bit about the Tata Sky Binge service is you can access TV shows of up to the last seven days, with 3,000 hours worth content claimed to be made available.
All this does sound appealing, but Tata Sky hasn’t mentioned a lot of details for the pack. What channels can the user get access to for TV shows? How many apps are expected to be added to the pack, and if so, how much more will one have to pay?
Also, to keep an active Tata Sky connection, you’ll have to pay a minimum of Rs 300 per month to get access to hundreds of channels. Not really sure if people would want to pay over Rs 700 cumulatively for this device.
Suppose you get the actual Fire TV stick for Rs 3,999 or Rs 5,999 (4K variant) and pay for Netflix (Rs 500 per month), Amazon Prime (Rs 999 for one year) and Hotstar (also Rs 999 for one year). If you split the cost over 12 months, the total cost monthly will be around Rs 660.
If you consider the Rs 4,000 or Rs 6,000 for the device as a one-time investment, the regular non-Tata Sky plan seems to have more weight, and you save money as well.
We’ll be able to figure that one out once we test the device.
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