Jio Fiber To Come With Mother Of All Set Top Boxes

The launch of Jio Fiber from the Reliance stable may disrupt the broadband market in India even as it impacts DTH operators, cinema halls and over-the-top (OTT) platforms.

The company, which plans to launch the service on September 5, will offer high-speed Internet broadband services starting from 100 mbps at a price of Rs. 700 per month, at par with leading broadband providers.

Sources say that Jio’s digital set top box (STB) will be the mother of all STBs, that will offer ultra-high definition entertainment, virtual reality content, multi-player video conferencing, voice-enabled virtual assistants, interactive gaming, home security and smart home solutions.

“Reliance will become a technology company with major focus on content to take on the Amazons and Netflixs of the world,” Sanjiv Bhasin, executive vice president, IIFL Securities told The Hindu. According to Edelweiss, Jio Fiber’s pricing is not as disruptive as was the case of mobility launch assuming basic plan constitutes 100Mbps data connection with 100GB monthly allowance.

8 million by 2023’

“India currently has 18 million home broadband households (accounting for about $2.5 billion in revenue), and we forecast Jio to reach 8 million subscribers in this segment by FY23, contributing to about 6% to overall Jio revenues,” Goldman Sachs wrote in a report.

Jio’s STB will come bundled with a landline connection and access to Jio’s Internet of things (IoT), and will offer free voice calls for life and unlimited international calling to U.S. and Canada at a price of ₹500 per month.

It will also offer free HD LED TV and digital STBs to customers who opt for Jio Forever annual plans. However, details on the plan, brand of TV and the like are not available. Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofAML) sees Direct-to-home companies such as Dish TV as the most vulnerable to this bundled offering.

“Jio Fibre could disrupt the business models of traditional distributors and broadcasters, resulting in increased competition in OTT content offering,” said Emkay Research.

“With a disruptive concept under ‘Jio first-day-first-show’ of watching new movies on the same day as release, multiplex companies like PVR may face a multiple de-rating,” BofAML said in its research note.―The Hindu

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