It’s been weeks since we bid a reluctant farewell to Kwese’s satellite TV. Though it’s not completely dead all that remains is a poor imitation in the form of its remaining free to air bouquet with a severely curtailed channel list. The reason that Econet gave for the switch was that Kwese would now focus on internet TV and VOD services in the form of iFlix and Kwese Play.
A lot of us thought of this as nothing but a face saving coup de grâce. It would appear I for one was wrong in thinking that. Today a tweet from ZOL caught my attention.
Get these Roku Packages and start streaming Netflix, Youtube and airplay from any device and experience TV like you have never before. Get the box from as little as $10 per month (12-month contract) or $15 p.m. (6 month). Call to place your order 0772263921 #Twimbos #ZOLWibroniks pic.twitter.com/bjqp5tqeF8
— ZOL Zimbabwe (@ZOLconnect) November 21, 2018
It seems you can now get the Kwese iPlay box on either a 12 month contract where you get to pay $10 per month or if you prefer a shorter term of 6 months where you get to part with $15 per month. This certainly makes the box even more affordable when compared to the usual $89 which you had to part with in a single shot. The contract also entitles you to 12 months of iFlix.
It seems Econet is serious about taking the Kwese Play route
The Econet Group has a lot of resources and partnership in place that can well make the Kwese Play device a resounding success. In Zimbabwe they own Liquid Telecoms, ZOL and of course Econet Wireless Zimbabwe. All three are the largest operators in their sectors. If they start selling more streaming bundles or zero rate their services that might give them some traction.
Often the reason why people do not consider the streaming option is because of hardware. Watching entire movies on a mobile device gets old fast. Selling streaming boxes on a contract makes them very affordable. These boxes are branded which means when streaming does become more mainstream people will forever associate the activity with Econet or iFlix. Remember how people call every soda drink Coke, toothpaste Colgate etc.
There remains the connectivity issue and as I have pointed out Econet does have the muscle, cunning and resources to give this to the people. The problem is that unless you have Wibroniks, ADSL or Fibre, iFlix is not really for regular use. Econet does have bundles but I would argue these do not go far enough. A $28 100GB streaming bundle would be more like it.
NB The Roku Box requires internet speeds of 2 Mbps and above. I would recommend a 3 Mbps connection and above. You can buy this box even if you are not using a ZOL internet connection.