Market Insight

NEW COUNTRY: Malaysian data and forecasts added to TV Intelligence

June 20, 2013

David Scott David Scott Associate Director – Research and Analysis, Service Providers & Platforms
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  • DTH satellite will remain the most popular pay TV medium in Malaysia but competition is increasing from rival platforms.


  • Astro exists as the sole DTH satellite pay TV operator and continues to dominate the market with over 3.3m subscribers.


  • Unlike many other Asian markets, pay TV piracy has posed a limited threat to operators in Malaysia.


IHS Electronics & Media has added Malaysia to its TV Intelligence service, expanding our company and market level data analysis on the pay and free television industry to 71 countries worldwide.


Our Malaysian data covers all operators and platforms which is broken down and split between free and pay TV models including detailed data analysis of subscribers and revenue for each operator dating back to 1996. In addition, five-year forecasts have been completed following extensive research and analysis of data from key industry sources.


The Malaysian pay TV industry is dominated by satellite while IPTV is also important and cable has been reintroduced recently. Unlike many other Asian markets, pay TV piracy has posed a limited threat to operators in Malaysia largely due to the sophistication of set-top boxes deployed. This has facilitated steady growth in the Malaysian pay TV market as is shown by the increase of subscribers from 2.3m in 2007 to over 3.5m by the end of 2012.


Astro Malaysia Holdings (Astro) is the leading pay TV operator in Malaysia and the largest in South East Asia by subscriber base. Astro launched its DTH pay TV service in 1996 and in 1997 was granted the exclusive rights to operate DTH services in Malaysia until 2017 and non-exclusively to 2022. Astro surpassed the 1m subscriber milestone in 2003, 2m in 2007, 3m in 2011 and had reached just over 3.3m by the end of March 2013. The company also distributes content via IPTV and OTT platforms. The Astro B.yond IPTV service launched in 2011 and is delivered through fibre optic broadband in partnership with Time Dotcom Berhad. Astro recently extended its IPTV coverage after signing a ten-year partnership deal in April 2013 with broadband operator Maxis for the delivery of its B.yond IPTV and Astro On-The-Go OTT services via Maxis' fibre broadband network. The Astro B.yond IPTV subscriber base has grown from 3,000 in January 2012 to 11,000 by the end of January 2013.    


Astro also provides additional services such as its Astro B.yond Personal Video Recorder (PVR) service and initiated Malaysia's first High-Definition TV (HDTV) broadcast in December 2009, both of which are split out in our new Malaysian data set. IHS also takes into account multi-set usage providing all summary data in two forms: 'primary set' and total. This allows users to distinguish between Malaysia's main form of television in the home and secondary forms, where used.


The other major pay TV service in Malaysia is HyppTV, owned and operated by incumbent telco Telekom Malaysia (TM). TM launched the IPTV service in 2004 and has since migrated delivery of the service to Malaysia's High Speed Broadband (HSBB) network. TM also operates a web TV service called Hypp.TV that delivers content to a personal computer.


Malaysia's newest pay TV operator is ABNxcess which launched in June 2013 and is the sole cable TV operator in the country. Several other pay TV operators have attempted to enter the market but have struggled to achieve success largely due to the high cost of content, technology and funding. Previous entrants include cable TV operators Mega TV and U Television, formerly known as MiTV. Mega TV launched in 1995 before ceasing operation in 2001 while U Television suffered a similar fate closing its business in 2006, just one year after launch. Fine TV also launched its IPTV service in 2005 which continues today but to date the service remains only a marginal player with an estimated 20,000 subscribers. 


Meanwhile, the Malaysian Government collaborated with Astro to provide free DTH satellite television in Malaysia from February 2012. The non-subscription based DTH satellite TV service called Njoi, pronounced 'enjoy', is Malaysia's first free satellite TV service offering 22 TV and 20 radio channels to 209,000 customers as at end January 2013, up from 132,000 in the previous quarter. IHS expects the free service will continue to drive further increases in viewership across Malaysia particularly among lower income households.

As with the existing levels of data available via TV Intelligence, the new Malaysian data set is delivered using consistent metrics (households, subscribers and revenues) and is available in local currency, Euros and US dollars. The result is directly comparable data for 71 countries, eight key world regions and both Worldwide and International totals, providing both a segmented and whole view of the Malaysian TV market.

IHS welcomes any feedback on the new Malaysian data and forecasts from TV Intelligence subscribers which will help to ensure we provide the most realistic and accurate reflection of the Malaysian TV market available.

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