IN10 Media yesterday reamended its Reference Interconnect Offer (RIO) in order to make its broadcaster bouquet NT0 2.0 compliant after goofing up with the twin conditions for bouquet formation laid down by the broadcasting watchdog TRAI. The reamendment comes merely a day before the initial amendment to the RIO kicks into effect today allowing IN10 Media to launch its upcoming Kids channel Gubbare.
IN10 Media had initially on 9th March notified a new RIO in order to launch its broadcaster bouquet Apna EPIC Value Pack and Bhojpuri Movie channel Filamchi. The aforesaid bouquet priced at Rs 2 back then was NTO 2.0 compliant with the RIO invoking amended Regulations 2020.
Few months down the lane on 17th August 2020, it amended its RIO once again in order to launch its Kids channel Gubbare and convert its Hindi Music channel Showbox from free-to-air (FTA) mode to a pay channel.
1) a) The sum of the a-la-carte rates of the pay channels (MRP) forming part of a bouquet shall in no case exceed one and half times the rate of the bouquet of which such pay channels are a part.
b) The a-la-carte rates of each pay channel (MRP), forming part of a bouquet, shall in no case exceed three times the average rate of a pay channel of the bouquet of which such pay channel is a part.
2) MRP of a channel should not be more than the MRP of any bouquet containing that channel.
TRAI’s twin conditions for bouquet formation
The broadcaster goofed up massively and ended up framing up a bouquet that wasn’t NTO 2.0 compliant. The aforesaid amendment ensured that the MRP of channels exceeded 3 times the average rate of pay channel flouting the twin conditions for bouquet formation.
The broadcaster has now had to curtail its plan to turn into a pure pay broadcaster by delaying the conversion of its free-to-air Hindi Music channel Showbox to a pay channel. IN10 Media has dropped Showbox from both its bouquet Apna EPIC Value Pack as well its a-la-carte channel lists in order to make the bouquet NTO 2.0 compliant.
It remains to be seen as and when IN10 Media moves ahead with its plan for Showbox conversion as a pay channel along with the pending launch of Ishaara TV.
Given the complexity of the twin conditions for bouquet formation, if and when the true implementation of NTO 2.0 happens it will be very interesting to see if someone else too goofs up and ends up framing up a non-compliant bouquet.
Clarification from IN10 Media Spokesperson “We would like to clarify that we are well aware of the conditions laid out in NTO 2 and there was no goof up in determining the prices as these prices were never effective in the first place (they were supposed to be effective from 1st October 2020, which never happened). We were waiting for certain development for the launch of Ishara TV and were to include it in the bouquet, however due to some delay we could not include it in time and hence the RIO which was to be effective from 1st October 2020 wasn’t changed in between.”