High quality, affordable internet could strain DStv and advertisers


High quality and affordable internet would be the real challenge to DStv in Africa as rival on-demand internet streaming media Netflix entered the market.

Steven Ambrose, chief executive of Strategyworx said there was need for companies to adjust to the changing landscape so as to survive.

He also added that the whole television industry was going to change and this would also affect the advertising industry.


“There is no question that we struggle with slow internet, low internet penetration and generally poor internet quality in South Africa. It’s not all about speed; it’s also about quality of the actual internet,” he said.

Netflix, an American multinational provider of on-demand internet streaming media, and of flat rate DVD-by-mail in the United States and now in Africa, entered the African market recently posing a serious challenge to DStv’s dominance on the continent.

But for now, slow and poor internet quality remains the only leverage other service providers like DStv will have to rely on their dominant market position.

DStv has had no serious competitor for over 21 years, commanding the largest market share in the payTV category (in Nigeria and across Africa). 

Ambrose said there was a lot of ways of getting Netflix, adding that, tens of thousands of South Africans were enjoying Netflix and other American streaming services.

He also warned of an explosion in the movies space over the next few years.  

“As far as the whole consumption of movies over the internet and on-demand is concerned; we are definitely going to see this market exploding in the next two years in South Africa and the continent.”

This market is expected to grow together with provision of fibre to the home and high speed mobile internet.

“People are no longer prepared to sit and watch linear movies; if you want to want something you just dial up and watch from the device you intend to watch it,” he said.

“Consumers movies and television does not have to be restricted to the big box or lounge, so the nature of how people are consuming and what they are consuming has changed dramatically.”