Nigeria: NTA-Star TV Targets 50 Channels

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A pay television operator, NTA-Star TV said it planned to increase its channels to 50 by the end of this year. Chairman of Startimes Networks of China, the major investor in the Pay TV,  Pang Xin Xing, who disclosed this at the one year anniversary of the firm in Abuja, stated that his company had invested $17 million (about N2.6 billion) since the commercial launch of the Pay TV in 2010.

NTA-Star TV is the joint venture of the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) and the Startimes Network of China.

Xing also disclosed that the pay television has over 400, 000 subscribers since it started operation last year. Speaking through an interpreter, the investor promised that the service of the Pay TV would be deployed in many other states across the country.

Also speaking, the director-general of NTA, Usman Magawata said that the Pay TV, which started service in Abuja and Lagos, has extended it services to 10 more states in Nigeria.

Magawata, who stated that all the remaining community NTA stations have been actualised, added that that would serve as an advantage to the Pay TV because its service would be received anywhere NTA has network.

While promising good quality of service for its customers, the director-general stated that the management of the Pay TV was working hard to improve the content of the existing channels, even as it planned to increase it from about 40 to 50 channels before the end of this year.

The chairman, board of NTA, Patrick Ogbu, in his remarks, described the Pay TV as a unique one because its decoder does not operate with a satellite dish like other Pay TVs, yet, it gives clear signals.

"Startimes decoder is cheap unlike its sisters in the market; it is durable and has about 40 interesting channels. Before now, ownership of satellite dish used to be a luxury, but now, it is no longer so because the price of the NTA-Startimes decoder have brought down the cost of other providers," he said.

"Startimes channels are carefully selected for different user needs, such as new documentaries, live sports, entertainment, kids and education. A number of NTA channels are also included in the package like NTA News 24, sports 24, entertainment and knowledge," he disclosed.