Local internet TV startup Uhuru readies launch of Zimbabwe’s 1st 24-hour Hip Hop channel

Nigel Gambanga Avatar
Pay TV, VOD, Hip Hop 24, Zimbabwean TV, Internet TV

Some people looking for entertainment alternatives probably know Uhuru TV, the Zimbabwean media startup and Internet TV service that emerged in early 2016.

The team there has been a bit quiet for a while, which was probably a sign of the work they were involved in, trying to deliver a wider content lineup and batting bigger players like Netflix, ShowMax and DStv.

The latest development from Uhuru is that they are making the final preparations to launch a 24-hour channel focused on Hip Hop Music and culture.

Called Hip Hop 24, it is set to go live after the first quarter of 2017 and it’s in partnership with ZimboMusic, a music streaming service from Bulawayo which has been focused on discovering new talent in urban music genres.

It will be flighted on Uhuru TV with some of the content also distributed on YouTube.

This information was shared by Dzidzai Chidumba, the founder of yet to launch Zimbabwean Mobile Virtual Network Operator Viva Mobile which owns the Uhuru Tv service.

Both Uhuru and Zimbo Music will channel resources into the production, broadcasting and distribution of new shows for youth audiences in Zimbabwe. Hip Hop 24 is set to be the first 24-hour station focused on Hip Hop music and other related urban music genres.

According to Chidumba, 75% of the content will be from local artists and producers and this will include music shows, entertainment news, reality shows and magazine programs.

Hip Hop 24 is supposed to be Uhuru’s first major content partnership for the year, with other plans for the year set to be a tie up with Rising Stars, a fledgeling live schools sports platform with sports magazine shows. This is expected to expand Uhuru’s lineup to include consistent coverage of schools sports league matches.

 Betting on the local advantage

With the tussle to secure content rights a central aspect of establishing relevance in the internet TV and media space, Uhuru’s move to partner local creators and curators could be one of its more pragmatic ones.

In a pool that includes deep-pocketed rivals like Naspers, Econet Media, Amazon and VOD alpha dog Netflix, startups like Uhuru are hopelessly unmatched when bidding for international box office content from markets like Hollywood.

Playing on the strength of great local content, which Uhuru and its partners now have to select wisely, will create a point of difference as long as the best of this content is what they show.


  1. farai

    2 zeros don’t make one. Two unknown entities combining to give us content from unknown singers….battling against OpenView, DSTV, Kwese etc is just a waste of time.

    A cursory glance on the Zimbomusic site will show you this is just child’s play.

  2. Macd Chip

    After reading about them here, l did sign for a 30 day free access, what a wasted 2hrs of my time trying to find anything related to Africa let alone Zim. Nothing Uhuru about it, nothing African original.

    These guys must pay techzim a premium for free advertising! Like l said before, these guys have nothing in Zim to sustain that Uhuru TV. But they do have suckers at techzim who they know if they call and blow hot air and give air pies they are ready to do advertising for them without paying anything.

    1. Nigel Gambanga

      Please note that all sponsored content is indicated as such. Despite your assumptions, this was not a paid article.

      1. Macd Chip

        I noticed that, thats why l said they must be charged, everytime they give someone a ring at techzim, there name get published for free! Nothing new, the same scam of scaiming to be launching soon…

  3. Jackson Muthembu

    inbetween fake news and real news, there is mediocre/un researched news.
    Someone calls with a story, reporter/blogger opens wordpress editor, clicks new post and types as person narrates, clicks publish. No follow up, no research, just click publish.

    today’s herald has a story about a local firm getting an international award, turns out its a scam. If only they had googled the award.

    On techzim, its okayish i guess. They are not really reporters, they are probably getting paid by the dude.
    These types of sponsored/ad articles really waste peoples time. Be honest that its an ad/paid story, we will still read the story and take it with a pinch of salt it deserves.

    1. Nigel Gambanga

      Jackson, thanks for reading our posts, including the sponsored ones. This, however, was not a sponsored article.

  4. Paul

    I’ve tried Uhuru out, when they first started & now, & I have to say it wasn’t so great before but wow! They’ve really improved! Love the user interface & I’m saving on my t.v. bill. Excited about the new channels. I’m sure a lot of nostalgic diasporans will be excited to be able to catch their old schools playing.
    People’s negativity is hilarious! Why not wait & see how it goes, so that you won’t have to bite your tongue later?!

    1. Macd Chip

      ..in the third year now and still waiting..

      1. Paul

        Actually they only started early last year. Those of us on it are enjoying it.. do you!

        1. Macd Chip

          l do not need to..

          tried them nothing new on their list

          1. Uhuru Support

            Macd Chip, we no longer use the portal you logged into it, we have redesigned the GUI and added channels up to 100.

  5. m.digital

    Is it ok to overlook the story and just bemoan the website’s page weight? I will do so anyhow. It’s one heavy site. 4.5MB just loading the home page. But then again techzim hp weighs 5MB. In an environment where data bundles are so expensive i would hope zimbabwean sites optimised their sites. Visiting these two sites is a whooping 10MB of data gone…surely that aint right

    1. prime

      use an ad blocker techzim is infested with ads, most sites are i would rather pay for my content than this rubbish of having 5+ ads loading on one page

    2. Web Ningi

      Usually you pay for quality, just like watching YouTube videos, more quality more data. unfortunately the ISPs are to blame for the data pricing not web developers.

  6. tsc

    nothing African from the word hip-hop,thats 100% American
    do they know adverstising?? where are they from? VOD ,how do they operate ,is it satellite or data, any network operator supports that data network

    1. Martial Arts

      Tsc, I thought hip-hop eminated from African American culture, that has some African in it I think.

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