MultiChoice adds Showmax for DStv Premium subscribers

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Cape Town – MultiChoice has decided to give DStv Premium subscribers access to Naspers' Showmax subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) service included in the Premium monthly subscription fee.

DStv Premium subscribers will be able to access Showmax, worth R99 per month, through DStv Explora decoders, the DStv Now app, online and smart TV sets.

Shaun Trennery first noticed the DStv Now update on Monday morning saying that "Showmax is now included in your DStv Premium subscription".

Channel24 asked MultiChoice about it and was told an announcement is coming. Just after 14:00 on Monday MultiChoice in a statement to media, confirmed the Showmax inclusion in DStv Premium and said binge-watching "is the way the world is moving".

"That's why we're offering all our Premium customers Showmax, so they can enjoy this exceptional experience," says Mark Rayner, MultiChoice South Africa CEO in the statement.

Showmax carries a catalogue of 25 000 TV shows and films.

A link has been added to the DStv Now app with DStv Premium subscribers who can use up to four mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets to access the DStv Now app. 

The Showmax subscription gives customers access to two concurrent streams on different devices, so parents can watch their shows on the big screen while the kids watch cartoons on their tablet. 

The tighter Showmax integration with MultiChoice comes as the 2-year old SVOD service is folding its South African and African operations into the DStv Digital Media unit of MultiChoice but told Channel24 in response to a media enquiry that it's not being done as a cost-cutting exercise.

The merged Showmax and DStv Digital Media will be renamed as a new digital division reporting directly to Imtiaz Patel, CEO of Naspers' video entertainment unit.

Showmax's operations outside of South Africa is headed up by John Kotsaftis, while Graeme Cummings, DStv Digital Media general manager and Chris Savides, Showmax Africa boss are continuing in their roles for now.

"The time has come for us to align these two services more closely to create an even better entertainment experience for our customers and to truly innovate in this space," said Imtiaz Patel in an email.