I have been a great fan of the Tata Sky service for the past one year. The picture and sound clarity is worth the additional money for the installation and the premium one pays for the monthly subscription. However, the events over the last week or so has left a very bad taste in the mouth and I would say that everyone should stay away from them.

About a week back Tata Sky announced that they are reducing the monthly charges and providing the Sports Channels (ESPN-STAR bouquet, Ten Sports) and the BBC add-ons at the same cost but as optional components. While this is a welcome change I had two issues with it. Bad implementation and incorrect information.

Bad Implementation – The ideal way to implement it would have been that each customer should have been called or given an option to opt out (rather than opt in). That too while the French Open is underway and the Euro 2008 is a week away. If they are changing the plan, they should ask the customer, rather than the customer having to take the pains. That said their helpline was busy and unavailable, and they did not have the courtesy to call back after making me wait on their stupid helpline for 20 mins, thrice.

Incorrect Information – They said that the cost would remain the same even if I added the optional package. I think this is incorrect since if you add the BBC channels and Ten Sports, the cost is more than the existing cost.

Now – Super Saver (Rs. 260) + ESPN-STAR (Rs. 40) + BBC (Rs. 30) + Ten Sports (Rs. 15) = Rs. 345

Earlier – Super Saver Pack (Rs. 300). (My subscription charges for the month of May is provided below as an example)

01-Jun-08 Subs Fee Monsoon promo pack- 3 for the period (30-May-08 to 31-May-08) @ Rs 8.55 per day 17.10
01-Jun-08 Subs Fee Monsoon promo pack- 3 for the period (01-May-08 to 29-May-08) @ Rs 9.86 per day 285.94

I am shocked that Tata – very recently crowned to be a trusted brand – would take such a stupid step and harm its own image. I would now advise all friends to go for the cheaper option of DishTV despite the very very irritating SRK ad. You guys have lost a loyal customer is all I have to say.

7 thoughts on “Tata Sky Sucks

  1. Thanks for this post.

    The Tata Sky guys know their marketing onions. They have created a good base of customers and are now shafting them. As you rightly pointed out, it was impossible to get a person on the phone; they just have a pre-recorded message under option 4 (add a new package).

    We couldn’t hear it properly and we had to send three SMSs before we got it right. For the record, you have to send:
    ADD SPORTS PLAT
    to:
    56633

  2. Goyal says:

    Hi Srinivas,

    I already have the new packages; ordered them on the website. But the point is that they should have made people opt out, not in.

  3. Ratan Tata says:

    Isko laga daala to life ka wat laga daala!!!!

    infact i should have read mouthshut.com before going in for TATA sky. I personally have had a very bad experience of Tata sky.

    And guess what everytime it rains, the stupid settop box gives an error and says it cannot read the signal. I am from Bombay and so i think for the next 3 months there isnt going to be any TV for me. We get to know that theres a slight drizzle outside bcoz our TV stops working! strange eh?

    “The Tata Sky guys know their marketing onions. They have created a good base of customers and are now shafting them.”
    and Mr Srinivas you clearly don’t know anything about marketing. Even if TATA sky has a good base, as a percentage of indian population thats minuscule. Theres a great potential there and hence the entry of all the big boys of indian business like Reliance ( skymagic) or bharti.
    besides the switching costs for consumers is very minimal; that is the reason why SRK is yelling on the top of his voice that the set top box is now free ; hence apart from new consumers even the existing TATA sky customers can switch to it easily. plus they are claiming to give 200 free channels which i hope is good.

    the problem with TATA sky is that there are too few channels in the basic vanilla product you pay for. everything else has a price. i mean wtf! will these channels stop showing advertisements if i pay for them? NO! then i wont pay up! especially…it has to take really stupid people to pay for channels like ZOOM. whats more irritating is that , these channels don’t vanish from your TV but you get a stupid blue screen error message saying boss…you have to pay money to watch this channel. why not just remove all these pay channels so that i can channel surf in peace?

    these cable and DTH companies have a long history of armtwisting the common public before important sports events like the world cup. I say all consumers shouldnt pay up. They will have to make the channels free eventually.

    also since competition is hotting up with players with deep pockets like Bharti and Reliance joining the bandwagon i think TataSky will surely have to give more bang for the buck!

    as for me…i think as of NOW, DishTv is a better option than TataSKy.

    as i have already said ….

    TATA sky laga daala, to life ka wat laga daala! 🙂

  4. rishi says:

    I have been a loyal customer of TataSky for over a year now. Like you, I too have been impressed by the picture quality and the many features provided (favorites etc)

    These current events have disturbed me. Just this would not be too bad, but it gives a disturbing glimpse of thier attitude. If this continues, I would have to shift to cable, or DISH.

  5. Ninad says:

    i had mailed them regarding information about the new packages in last week of may, but these ppl replied with the old packages (as if i don’t know how to check their website). the implementation of new plans was really bad, the channels were discontinued at midnight of 1st june, which i had dreaded. and their helpline number was not working for ours. i was not able to watch few programmes on bbc that night.
    i was hoping that standards of tata sky will improve over time to match that of sky sports in uk, instead it’s detiorating over time

  6. Goyal says:

    @Ratan Tata – Agree with the making most channels payable bit and that it sucks. However, DishTV also suffers from signal outage on rainy days (not too much of a problem in Gurgaon ;))

    @Rishi – I think at the current rate DishTV would be cheaper, even if you buy a new connection/set top box.. I might soon switch over, but I am waiting for the new Tata Sky subscription changes by the end of the month. Will keep everyone posted.

    @Ninad – If you are not moving forward, you are moving back. Tata Sky is doing that. Surprising thing from a Tata brand.

    Btw, I never knew that LandMark was a Tata owned venture 🙂

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