Zee Group-owned Siti Cable will launch high-speed broadband services in five different cities by June this year, company sources revealed.
Siti Cable, a brand of Siti Networks, currently operates broadband services in Delhi, Hisar, Rohtak and Karnal. The new locations are likely to be outside Haryana, according to our sources.
“We will be using Docsis technology from Cisco,” said a Siti official, who did not want to be named.
The company is trying to withstand competition from fellow operator Hathway as well as upcoming contender Reliance Jio. Jio has a target of rolling out fiber broadband in 100 cities in India.
The entry of the Reliance Industries company into the broadband space has spurred investments from rivals. While telecom companies like Bharti Airtel, Vodafone and Idea Cellular are making massive investments into 4G, cable companies like Hathway DataCom, Den Networks and now Siti Networks are starting to double down on their investments into Docsis and GPON (fiber) based broadband services.
Siti Cable has 12 mln cable connections in the country, though many of them are via its local cable operator partners. These customers are not the company’s own, and Siti is likely to target its direct customers for its broadband service before looking at third-party customers.
At present, only 1.6 mln, or 13% of its cable subscribers, are located in areas where the company is able to provide broadband services. This will increase with the expansion into five new locations, said the official.
Out of the 1.6 mln, about 220,000 are broadband users.
In addition to broadband, the company is also focused on evolving its cable services from the current linear, broadcast mode to a non-linear, on-demand mode with its Ditto TV application.
The service, that can also be used with other broadband services, provides 100 live TV channels over the internet. It also provides seven-day rewind function for Zee Group channels.
In comparison, JioTV, a similar service from Reliance Jio, provides about 350 TV channels, and seven-day catch-up function on some of them.
However, unlike JioTV, Ditto is priced at just Rs 20 per month.