- Who? DigiVive was launched in India in 2010 to work in partnership with service providers around the world to help them launch new, mass-market products in days, not months.
- What? The company enabled 13 service providers in India to launch nexGTv, its flagship mobile TV application, to 19 million subscribers by June 2014. DigiVive has enabled some of the leading mobile operators like Airtel, Vodafone, Idea, Etisalat, MTS, RCOM and others to launch mobile TV services.
- How? By offering content, technology, systems integration and revenue share using an over-the-top service delivery model, based on an open platform.
- Results? Overall the service has gained 16 percent market share, second only to YouTube, which is free and over-the-top.
DigiVive’s nexGTv has been downloaded more than 19 million times and has become the most popular mobile TV App in India since its launch in 2012. It is the second most viewed video app (with 16 percent market share) after YouTube, according to Nielsen Informate Mobile Insights.
nexGTv is offered as an over-the-top (OTT) service directly to consumers while working in tandem with network operators to speed and ease time to market. The offer includes the content itself combined with a wallet, making it easy for consumers to pay for what they view. The service model provides its consumers a choice to pay through a telecom operator’s wallet or nexGTv’s mobile payment wallet. The integrated service involves back-end customer lifecycle management including 24×7 service monitoring and issue resolution, tiered billing, and best in class scalable and secure infrastructure.
DigiVive recognized that many network operators saw OTT players as a big threat, after watching startups attack their revenue streams and consume their resources without gaining any income. The company’s business model is about working in partnership with service providers to monetize new services rapidly, without huge upfront investment.
The key to DigiVive’s success was to make an identical offer to multiple players, setting up partner channels quickly and at modest cost. The company performed a series of separate integrations to connect a wide network, potentially touching hundreds of millions of subscribers through 13 distinct application program interfaces (APIs).
What’s on offer?
nexGTv can run across 2G, EDGE, 3G, 4G and Wi-Fi networks, and on most popular smartphone platforms including Symbian, Android, BlackBerry and iOS. Access methods include WAP, Native Apps, Interactive Voice and Video Response, and dongle so subscribers can stream video on smartphones, tablet and PCs.
There are more than 150 live TV channels to choose from such as genres like news, entertainment, devotional content, music and movies. In addition, video-on-demand content is also offered, which includes Mahabharata (one of ancient India’s best-known Sanskrit epics), short films and movies. Viewers can catch up with their favorite programs for up to seven days after broadcast via the Replay TV feature. nexGTv ranks among the top ten paid applications in its category in Apple’s App Store.
A standardized approach pays dividends
nexGTv runs on SunTec’s Xelerate digital service management platform. This supports subscriber management, catalog sharing, ordering, provisioning, charging and multi-party settlement.
SunTec is a member of TM Forum and an active contributor to the Forum’s Open Digital Program concerning open architecture and application program interfaces (APIs), and a partnership management framework.
DigiVive’s long-term business plan is to supply both users and providers with a marketplace for next-generation technologies and services. Revenue for 2013 was close to $5 million and that is expected to more than double in 2014.
Some of the most popular content can be consumed free of cost on nexGTv platform, while full access to the nexGTv content catalog can be provided on a monthly, weekly or daily subscription basis. Almost 400,000 subscribers pay regularly for nexGTv. The most popular content, such as Indian Premier League (IPL, attracts more than 700,000 paying subscribers.
nexGTv also provides a way for advertising agencies and brands to advertise their products and services, with targeted advertising providing another revenue stream for DigiVive and a way of monetizing its free user base.
Digital open for business
Digivive and SunTec believed the best approach to speeding global adoption of their business model is through standards, and TM Forum’s Open Digital Program is designed to help companies to do just that. SunTec brought the experience of working with the communications and financial services sectors with it.
SunTec played a leading role in producing the Forum’s Business Partnering Guide, which has since been turned into a web-based, step-by-step guide to business-to-business-to-any (B2B2X) partnerships. All the key documents can be downloaded, free, by members. The key principles are to:
- create an open architecture – both technical and business;
- implement a set of clear, simple REST APIs to integrate with partners;
- develop a strong partnership framework based on common commercial principles, but remain open to accommodate specific business terms.
Reaping the benefits
To grow Digivive’s platform further, SunTec will be using the new generation of open digital REST APIs designed to speed the integration and launch of such services. SunTec is also considering making the APIs it developed available as a contribution to the TM Forum for all members to use. This makes sense from three key viewpoints:
- Reducing cost – each hand-crafted API/integration is expensive, but Digivive found more than 80 percent commonality between each new operator implementation and previous ones.
- Speeding the launch of services – offering pre-integrated solutions with agreed APIs could reduce launch times from three to six months down to days or hours, avoiding huge amounts of potential lost revenue and market share that cannot be clawed back. DigiVive currently has the shortest roll out time for new services.
- Operating cost – support for standard APIs through a managed service agreement can radically reduce (by perhaps millions of dollars) the operating costs of services integrating across many partners.
As the digital ecosystem develops, a key differentiator for digital service providers is how easy they make it for communications service providers to do business with them. Given its success in India, DigiVive is now looking to roll out its model in other markets.