NTA Star TV Network offers StarTimes, a Direct-to-Home DTH pay TV service in Nigeria. Star TV Network is a collaboration between NTA and its Chinese partners StarTimes of China. The novelty of the NTA StarTimes service is that unlike most other pay TV services in Nigeria, subscribing to the NTA Star TV Network service requires no satellite dish, there is also no installation cost, and of course you do not have to worry about the weather.
All you need is a StarTimes decoder and you will start enjoying over 30 to 70 channels at 6000 Naira monthly or up to 4,800 Naira monthly.
NTA Startimes is currently available in Lagos, Abuja, Kano, Aba, Benin, Enugu, Ilorin, Jos, Kaduna, Kano, Markurdi, Onitsha, Port Harcourt, Sokoto, Uyo, Yola, and Ibadan. Startimes will be in more cities soon.
Just a StarTimes decoder, no dish required
The main selling point of StarTimes DTH Pay TV service is that it requires no satellite dish. StarTimes utilises digital terrestrial broadcast technology, DVB-T2.
No requirement for dish makes cost of the system cheap for subscribers. All you need is a Startimes decoder, which goes for around N3,990 with 1 month free subscription into the basic bouquet.
The StarTimes decoder is plug and play, just connect it to your TV, and you can start watching over 30 channels in your home if you subscribe to the basic package or up to 70 channels for the highest package.
Any TV antenna can be used for receiving the StarTimes signals, however an antenna mounted outside (external antenna) will offer better reception and will enable you receive the full offering. An outside antenna for your StarTimes system with connecting cable now goes for 2,500 Naira.
StarTimes signals are more weather resistant compared to satellite pay TV. Whether it is raining, cloudy, or sunny, StarTimes reception will be affected minimally.
GOtv offers a similar service to Startimes and is a direct competitor. However, Startimes have added a satellite service, which requires a dish.
StarTimes comes with over 35 to 70 channels. The channels are carefully selected to target different user needs news, documentaries, live sports, entertainment, Kids, Education, etc.
A number of NTA channels are included in the packages like NTA News 24, NTA Sports 24, NTA Entertainment, NTA Education, etc. Local NTA station for the your location is also available.
So depending on your location, you may also receive NTA Lagos, NTA Abuja, NTA Kano, NTA Aba, NTA Enugu, NTA Ibadan, or a local NTA station near you. More NTA channels may be added in future. Here are some of the other TV services on StarTimes service:
- BBC World News
- Discovery World
- CCTV News
- Fashion TV
- MTV Base
- Bollywood TV
- BBC World
There are also a number of local private channels on StarTimes like Silverbird, Galaxy and Channels TV and more are likely to be added in future.
See full channels.
StarTimes Nova and basic bouquet may be considered crappy looking at the quality of their offering, however considering the price of about N600 and 1200 Naira per month respectively, one will say you are getting a good value for your money. Besides you can pay for a higher package for more quality programming.
StarTimes will appeal to consumers in the entry level end of the pay TV market. These consumers are more likely to be price sensitive and will find the service attractive.
StarTimes is a good deal, but the possibility of watching some English Premier League matches (one match a week) live on NTA Sports 24 makes the Pay TV service an even better deal, especially to EPL fans within the entry level segment.
StarTimes Packages and Prices
Initial subscription to StarTimes from NTA Star TV Network now costs N3,990. This includes the StarTimes decoder and one month subscription into the basic bouquet.
Here are Startimes packages and their prices:
- StarTimes Decoder (with one month free Basic) – N3,900
- Startimes Nova Bouquet – 6000 Naira
- StarTimes Basic Package – 1,200 NGN
- StarTimes Classic Package – N2,400
- StarTimes Unique Bouquet – 4,800 Naira
StarTimes coverage and dealership
NTA Star TV Network plans to deploy the pay TV service throughout Nigeria within five years of launch.
For now NTA claims that StarTimes coverage is in Lagos, Abuja, Kano, Aba, Benin, Enugu, Ilorin, Jos, Kaduna, Kano, Markurdi, Onitsha, Port Harcourt, Sokoto, Uyo, Yola, and Ibadan.
Startimes coverage will be in more cities soon. The company now have dealers in the cities they operate.
Visit StarTimes dealers page for contacts of their dealers throughout Nigeria. Since NTA is involved in this project an NTA branch in any of the coverage cities will be a good place to look for your StarTimes decoder and any information you require about the Pay TV service.
You can also call their customer care numbers: 09-4618888, 01-2719999 for more inquires and information about StarTimes services.
You can also visit StarTimes website at www.startimes.com.ng
Remedy for NTA StarTimes reception issues
Although we can confirm that StarTimes is live in Lagos, Abuja, Kano, Aba, Benin, Enugu, Ilorin, Jos, Kaduna, Kano, Markurdi, Onitsha, Port Harcourt, Sokoto, Uyo, Yola, and Ibadan.
It is important to note that signal strength will vary depending on your location in the StarTimes coverage area.
This is because the Pay TV service uses the same terrestrial broadcast mast used by a conventional TV station. The closer you are to the StarTimes broadcast station the higher the strength and quality of the signal.
The implication of this is that locations further away from the StarTimes broadcast station will have weak reception.
Weak reception will lead to a number of ends. One is that the picture on your TV screen will appear hazy, due to the low strength of the NTA StarTimes signal reaching your TV.
Another is that you will not receive the full channels. For example, some users have reported receiving less than 20 StarTimes channels, instead of the over 30 channels advertised by the company.
This is also a result of poor reception. The last possibility is that no signal will be received at all.
In all cases the remedy is usually an external antenna. An external antenna, preferably one with an indoor booster (amplifier), like a Binatone antenna, will receive the weak signal and boost it (amplify) to a good strength and quality for your TV.
This will enable you receive clear pictures and audio on your TV. It will also enable you receive the full channels.
You can buy your external antenna from the same StarTimes dealer you bought the decoder from or from any reputable store.
An antenna with remote rotation functionality may come handy as it will make it convenient to rotate the external antenna for improved StarTimes signal reception remotely from inside the house. StarTimes currently advertise its recommended antenna with connecting cable for N2,500.
StarTimes also currently promote TVs with built-in StarTimes decoder. The Prices is as follows:
- 21-inches CRT TV – N22,800
- 26-inches LCD TV – N57,000
- 32-inches LCD TV – N77,000
StarTimes was established in 1988 in China and currently operates in 8 African Countries, Nigeria, Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, Guinea, Central African Republic, and Burundi.