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the best entertainment service based on your budget NEW CI Main

The Best Entertainment Service Based on Your Budget

Video streaming services allow you to watch hours of content whenever you want, with minimal interruptions from commercials. Streaming services like Netflix are available for a flat monthly fee. There are also excellent traditional entertainment services like DStv, ShowMax, and the exciting, affordable option from OpenView.

Although most streaming services are reasonably priced, the total cost can mount up quickly. Take a break from the remote and use our guide to figure out which services are the most cost-effective to avoid spending too much money.


OpenView is the first satellite TV service platform to offer free programming in South Africa. With more than 18 TV and 28 radio stations (including some in HD) and coverage in more than 3 million homes across the country, there’s always something fun for the whole family to watch or listen to.

Bollywood, Turkish and Indian telenovelas dubbed in English and Afrikaans, plus a plethora of other international shows are all available for your viewing pleasure. Your subscriptions to SABC and e.tv will also be maintained.

With complete nationwide availability, South Africans have access to HD video quality and a wealth of additional premium programming completely free of charge, forever. There is just a one-time fee involved, and there are no ongoing costs or instalments to worry about.


How much is OpenView?

OpenView costs R1 499.00 for a decoder, dish, and installation. After that, OpenView is completely free to use – forever!


The Pros of using OpenView

  • OpenView is the most affordable option for accessing digital TV entertainment, as there are no monthly payments required after the initial installation
  • You don’t need a bank account or credit card to purchase OpenView. Using OTT Voucher, you can buy OpenView using a LAYAWAY Pocket – and this can all be done with cash


The Cons of using OpenView

  • OpenView has only 28 audio channels available


MultiChoice owns DStv, a telecommunications and pay television provider in sub-Saharan Africa. Established in 1995, it serves users across the continent with satellite, online, and mobile apps that allow access to a wide variety of entertainment options.

More than two hundred television and radio stations are available on DStv. Several parts of Sub-Saharan Africa have different channel line-ups. 

Five or six distinct bundles/bouquets are available at various price points, with an additional four bundles for premium movie/TV show channels, Indian networks, Portuguese channels, and French channels.  

Most modern DStv decoders support the MultiChoice streaming platform ShowMax, in addition to various third-party apps, through a wired or wireless internet connection.


How much is DStv?

  • DSTV Premium package: R799
  • DSTV Compact Plus package: R519
  • DSTV Compact package: R409
  • DSTV Family package: R299
  • DSTV Access package: R99
  • Easy view package: R29


The Pros of using DStv

  • There are special add-ons that include BoxOffice, a virtual DVD store, and special decoder options such as the personal video recorder (PVR)
  • You can choose a package that fits your budget
  • High-quality sport coverage


The Cons of using DStv

  • Inflexible entertainment options
  • Limited access to new releases from movies
  • A more costly option


ShowMax might be thought of as a localised, less extensive version of Netflix. In its first year of operation (2015), the firm provided access to around 750 television shows and 400 movies. 

There is both foreign and domestic programming available through the service. Egoli, Orkney Snork Nie, Msawa, and Ballade vir ‘n Enkeling are all classics that have stood the test of time. 

Game of Thrones, True Detective, and Entourage are just a few of the international hits. They also air reruns of great shows including The Newsroom, The Wire, and Breaking Bad.

ShowMax’s integration with DStv is the main differentiating factor between it and Netflix. The two services are easily complementary because of the collaboration between the two companies. ShowMax only streams at a 720p average.


How much is ShowMax?

  • The monthly subscription is only R99


The Pros of using ShowMax

  • Access to a wider range of content than DStv
  • Streaming-based offering
  • Affordable monthly subscription


The cons of using ShowMax

  • The streaming quality is less than that of Netflix
  • Fewer content options than those offered by Netflix for a similar price point


The fact that a service with such a stellar reputation internationally is available in South Africa is quite exciting. The business expanded from providing a VOD streaming service and selling and renting DVDs to specialising only in online video.

They made their foray into content production in 2013 with the release of the first season of the House of Cards series. Their unique offerings attract a large subscriber base. They also work with high-definition and ultra-high-definition televisions and monitors. 

You can watch thousands of episodes of TV shows and documentaries, with more being added every day. The access to exclusive material is still a major benefit. The Marvel series Daredevil, Orange Is the New Black, and Narcos are all very popular on Netflix.


How much is Netflix?

  • Prices for packages are R115 to R175 per package. You can get anything from one standard-definition stream to as many as four high-definition or 4K streams with the various premium tiers.


The Pros of using Netflix

  • Access to thousands of series and movies with regularly updated content
  • HD compatibility available
  • Affordable packages


The Cons of using Netflix

  • Local users only have access to a limited range of Netflix international content

Final Verdict

OpenView remains the best option for South Africans looking for affordable and diverse entertainment services. You have access to a fantastic selection of channels, movies, and series, as well as audio channels – with no monthly costs!

Once you’ve paid for your OpenView subscription and installation you will have full access to all of the service provider’s content for free, forever. 

What’s more, OpenView is available to cash-based consumers in South Africa, meaning that you don’t even need a bank account to open an account. You can purchase an OpenView decoder on the LAYAWAY platform using an OTT Voucher.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, you can open a LAYAWAY pocket for an OpenView decoder. You can fund this pocket by using cash and an OTT Voucher.

There are no monthly costs when you use OpenView. Once you’ve paid for your subscription and installation, OpenView is free to use, forever.

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