South African TV Households to Grow 10 Percent by 2018


MAURITIUS: The total number of South African TV households will grow 10 percent from end-2015 to end-2018, according to new research from Dataxis, reaching nearly 13.3 million.

The percentage of TV households relying on free-to-air (FTA) terrestrial television services is predicted to fall from 48.2 percent to 34.5 percent, as pay-DTH continues to grow and new pay services using DTT and IPTV come on stream. Approximately 43 percent of TV households will need FTA digital receivers (STB or TV) by end-2016, equivalent to 5.4 million units, if the country manages to turn off analog television services by then.

There are currently two FTA terrestrial stations, SABC and, but the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) recently held public hearings regarding four applications for FTA TV broadcast licenses. South Africa will have a total of three DTT multiplexes (Multiplex One: 85 percent allocated to SABC for the broadcast of 17 channels; the remaining 15 percent goes to existing community TV channels. Multiplex Two: 55 percent was allocated to with a possible 11 channels, and 45 percent to M-Net with a possible nine channels. Multiplex Three: Up to 55 percent assigned to one or more commercial FTA broadcaster, and up to 45 percent to be assigned to one or more commercial pay-TV provider). ICASA has already confirmed a pay-DTT license has been issued to Siyaya TV, with conditional licenses awarded to Close TV, Mindset TV and Kagiso TV.