New free satellite TV service starts in SA

2013-10-03 11:33
Cape Town – Freevision has started as a new free satellite TV offering for South African viewers, offering 38 TV channels and 16 radio channels for a once-off decoder cost.

Sentech’s Freevision – launching before Platco Digital’s similar satellite TV offering Openview HD (OVHD) which will start on 15 October – is the rebranded Vivid satellite TV service which already has 60 000 viewers.

Sentech now wants to rapidly expand its presence by offering a bigger range of TV content as the number of free TV channels in the country is set to drastically grow once the long-delayed digital terrestrial television (DTT) switch-over in the country eventually happens.

Sentech's new Freevision offering will now be competing against OVHD – an sister company under the Sabido Investments umbrella.

Freevision carries a lot more free TV channels than OVHD and also comes with radio channels. Both Freevision and OVHD are free satellite TV services where viewers make a once-off purchase of a decoder, dish and installation.

Freevision will cost around R1 350 for an entry-level decoder providing standard definition (SD) television with 38 TV channels and 16 radio channels.

OVHD will cost around R1 600 for an entry-level decoder providing high definition (HD) television, providing what it says will be 16 TV channels and no radio channels. However the SABC says OVHD is lying and that its three SABC channels included as part of the 16 channels is not true and that it will not allow it to be carried on OVHD.

Freevision channel list

Freevision carries SABC1, SABC2, SABC3, SABC News, and will carry all of the SABC's and's further planned digital terrestrial television (DTT) TV channels. Community TV channels such as Alex TV, Tshwane TV, Cape Town TV, Bay TV, Soweto TV and 1KZN are included.

Two new TV channels Zulu TV and SA Channel are included.

Zulu TV will be started by playwright and producer Mbongeni Ngema, featuring a mix of Zulu and English programming with a focus on content about KwaZulu-Natal by local artists. The SA Channel will tell "inspiring and uplifting stories" about South Africa.

Mindset Learn and Mindset Health are educational channels on Freevision.

Faith-based channels on the platform include God Never Fails TV, RLW, Breakthru TV, New Generation TV, Abel Damina Ministries, the Synagogue Church – Emmanuel TV, Daystar, Starcross TV, Angel Television Africa, Kruiskyk, Tellilah, Spirit World, Redeemed Church of God, Ezekiel TV, Christ Embassy, CTV (TBN), World Restoration Services, Unity Broadcasting Network, Manifest Sons of God, Isambulo and Homebased TV.

Freevision also has radio stations such as Phalaphala FM, 5FM, Lotus, Ukhozi, Metro, Motsweding FM, RSG, Umhlobo Wenene FM, Ligwalagwala FM, Good Hope FM, SAfm, Lesedi FM, Ikwekwezi FM, Thobela FM, Munghana Lonene FM and Radio 2000.

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