India's leading DTH player, Tata Sky, is shifting a significant portion set-top box sourcing within the country. Tata Sky has partnered with Technicolor to develop set-top boxes that will be manufactured and distributed within India. The DTH (direct-to-home) operator will begin with the manufacturing of the HD set-top boxes and the Tata Sky Binge+ (Android enabled) boxes in a phased manner.
"As the world adjusts to the rapid changes emerging due to the recent effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, Tata Sky and Technicolor Connected Home are realigning production of a group of set-top boxes (STBs) to India by early 2021," says, Harit Nagpal, MD & CEO of Tata Sky.
Still, in early stages, the company did not share the percentage of set-top boxes that will be sourced locally. "The exact numbers and scale-up plans over time are being worked out currently," responded the company. Even the manufacturing location is currently unknown as the company says "we will be in a position to talk about the exact location in the coming days." Currently, Tata Sky set-top boxes are sourced from Vietnam and Thailand.
According to the companies involved, this shift in production and supply chain operations will streamline the manufacture and delivery of set-top boxes to consumers in India, and further strengthen the longstanding collaboration that has been in place between Technicolor and Tata Sky. There isn't any clarification on whether the locally manufactured set-top boxes will impact the pricing or not as the costing details are currently being worked out.
"Working with Tata Sky to move set-top box production to India will better serve this important market. It is yet another example of Technicolor's best-in-class supply chain, which remains flexible and adaptable. This is especially valuable in volatile situations, such as those created by COVID-19. Our supply chain capabilities have proven to be a strategic asset as we offer multiple options to our customers. We remain committed to minimising the risk and total cost of ownership for service providers around the world," says Luis Martinez-Amago, President, Technicolor Connected Home.
Tata Sky, a joint venture between Tata Sons and TFCF Corporation (formerly known as Twenty-First Century Fox, Inc.), launched the DTH services in 2006, and since then has been one of the leading players in content distribution through Pay TV and OTT Services. As per the TRAI report of December 2019, Tata Sky has 22 million subscribers in the country.