SENEGAL’S SONATEL LAUNCHES ITS IP-TV OFFER

Telecoms

After an experimental period of two years, Sonatel has finally launched its IP-TV service over ADSL. The new product is called Kergui TV and offers around 100 TV channels, the ability to buy programmes from what is described as a “virtual videotheque”. This has 200 pieces of programming including: films, documentaries, concerts and cooking lessons. It is claiming to be the first operator to offer IP-TV and Video-on-demand on the continent.

The television channel is a partnership with three French channels (Canal Horizons, RTS and 2STV), as well several larger African TV channels. It has also reached agreements with content producers for the “virtual videotheque”. There are ten free television channels, the pay-for bouquet of Canalsat Horizons and what is described as a window on African television.

There are two offers targeted at Sonatel’s existing 20,000 DSL subscriber base:

- Kergui TV Silver: This allows access to 10 free TV channels, 200 VoD titles (priced between FCFA500-1500 a title) for FCFA4990 a month with the modem and decoder instaolled by Sonatel.

- Kergui TV Gold- The only difference is that the user pays for one of the bouquet of programmes offered by Canalsat Horizons (up to 65 channels) and it includes a total of 250 programmes (including radio). The window on African television includes: (RTS, 2STV, Africable, RTI (Côte d’Ivoire), ORTM (Mali), LC2 (Bénin), CRTV (Cameroun) and 2M (Maroc).

The first offer is seems a little “content-lite” and the second offer is a delivery deal with Canal Horizons. The African content is harder to judge and may include sport and films that would be attractive to users.