Astro launches Malaysia’s First Multilingual TV Guide

Astro introduced the next generation multilingual TV Guide, the first of its kind in Malaysia, which will be available to all Astro B.yond customers in phases nationwide beginning 24 February 2014 onwards.

Liew Swee Lin, Chief Commercial Officer of Astro said, “At Astro, we recognize ours is a journey to be better, to evolve, and to embrace innovation in every aspect of our business to be our customers’ brand of choice. Astro’s brand promise is to continuously invest in our customers and content to evolve our value proposition and to bring the best of entertainment experience to our customers and viewers. As part of Astro’s key milestone, we are pleased today to introduce the next generation multilingual TV Guide for a more personalized and improved viewing experience as well as to provide seamless integration from TV to Astro on the Go (AOTG) for our customers.”

Customers and viewers will notice a new programming guide and AOTG with a fresh look and feel, as well as features that will enable a more personalised and localised TV experience that engages them in the language of their choice. The new Electronic Programming Guide (EPG) will make it even easier for the customers to find and watch the content they want, at the time of their choosing – LIVE, recorded on their PVR or in our thousands of hours of on demand content. Among the key features of the new TV Guide they will enjoy are:-

•A Multilingual EPG to provide a richer and more meaningful experience for customers who prefer to find and watch their favourite programmes in a preferred language, whether in English, Bahasa Malaysia, Mandarin or Tamil.

•A Video On Demand (VOD) catalogue that enables better browsing and search capabilities according to genre, title, season and episode, providing customers with more control and choice over how they enjoy entertainment.

•An improved recording experience which allows customers with connected PVRs, to manage and browse their PVR recordings and VOD purchases, all from one place. Customers will be able to view all recorded episodes from a series, filter and arrange titles according to date and season, as well as lock their library of recordings to prevent accidental deletion.

•An enhanced and more capable Search engine for easy navigation and content discovery, where recordings or titles are categorised according to language, year of release, broadcast date and time as well as filter and sort items according to alphabetical order, recorded duration, expiry, and more.

Brian Lenz, Chief Innovation Officer at Astro added, “Astro continues to invest in our customers by giving them more content choices and a best in class entertainment experience. Today our VOD service offers close to 5,000 and growing titles ranging across movies, dramas, documentaries and more. As our VOD content increases, alongside more recorded programmes from our channels, our new multilingual EPG will simplify the user experience, thus enabling our customers to browse easily within their personal e-DVD store to find the programmes they want to watch.

We have over 470,000 PVR customers as at end October 2013.  With all the improvements to the EPG, we expect to see an upward trend in ‘time shift’ viewing among our customers, as they take control of the TV schedule to record more programmes for watching at their convenience. Additionally, the clean integration of On Demand into the experience will encourage more customers to connect their box to their broadband service to take advantage of the wide library of catch up and Pay per View titles available to them.”

Astro is increasingly delivering content to any screen a customer has available to them via AOTG, with over 700k downloads of the service and a 75% increase in registered subscribers year on year. On an average, an Astro customer spends approximately 72 minutes weekly on AOTG, a 100% increase in time spent watching videos online over last year. In order to harmonise the viewing experience for customers across all screens, Astro has extended the same look and feel of our next generation TV Guide to AOTG. AOTG users will enjoy the multilingual EPG, easy access to live sports, On Demand TV and movies in addition to the 30 linear channels currently available. It will also now be even easier to access AOTG content, where viewers can start watching selected content from our NJOI offering for free without registering, thus simulating higher interest in the service.

The latest TV guide will be automatically downloaded to all Astro B.yond set top boxes in phases, from 24 February 2014. Astro B.yond customers are advised leave their set top boxes on standby mode to receive the software update. Please visit www.astro.com.my/epg or tune into Channel 100 (from 22 February) for step by step tutorials on the new EPG. For more information on Astro on the Go, please visit www.astro.com.my/onthego.

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About Astro Malaysia Holdings Berhad
Astro Malaysia Holdings Berhad is a leading integrated consumer media entertainment group in Malaysia and Southeast Asia with operations in 4 key areas of business, namely pay-TV, Radio,
Publications and Digital Media.

With a customer base of over 3.7 million residential customers or approximately 55% penetration of Malaysian TV households, Astro offers 170 TV channels, including 38 HD channels, delivered via DTH satellite TV, IPTV and OTT platforms. Astro provides HD, 3D, PVR, VOD and IPTV services through Astro B.yond and Astro On-The-Go. Fulfilling its promise to bridge the digital divide for all of Malaysia, Astro has introduced NJOI as the country’s first non-subscription based satellite TV service, offering 22 TV and 20 radio channels.

Astro has developed strong in-house production capabilities. We are the leading producer of vernacular content catering to the multi-ethic and multi-lingual communities in Malaysia. We produce close to 9,000 hours of content annually in multiple genres, creating strong vernacular content IPs and iconic brands, which are dominating the comedy, Islamic, edu-tainment and Hokkien content space.

Astro Radio includes Malaysia’s highest rated stations across key languages and is available on both terrestrial and digital channels, reaching approximately 12.2 million weekly listeners and capturing a 51% share of listenership in Malaysia. Astro also publishes entertainment and lifestyle magazines and its digital arm is involved in digital publishing, applications and platforms.

Astro holds the distinction of the “Gold” award in the Media and Entertainment category at the Putra Brand Awards for 4 consecutive years from 2010 to 2013, including the “Brand of the Year” award in 2012 and the “Brand Icon” award in 2013. Astro recently won three Stevie Awards in 2013 International Business Awards for CSR initiatives. These awards are in recognition of Astro’s efforts to exemplify innovation, quality and strong corporate responsibilities.




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