French OTT platform Molotow has teamed up with Samsung and transmitter company TDF to offer a hybrid service combining DTT reception and OTT delivery of its service without the need for a separate set-top box.
Hybrid access is possible with all Samsung smart TV models from 2017 onwards, and viewers need to be within the reception area of the French digital terrestrial network TNT and have a fast enough broadband connection.
With this technical innovation, Molotov circumvents the fact that it has not signed distribution deals with two free-to-air terrestrial channels, NRJ12 and Chérie 25, as well as avoiding possible carriage fee conflicts with broadcasters such as TF1 and M6. The hybrid app was first announced last September. The hybrid service can be used from April 9, 2018.
In a related development, Molotov has reached five million subscribers in France, but the service is still not profitable. Talking to Les Echos, co-founder Jean-David Blanc said that the company aims for 400,000 paying subscribers in three years’ time, when it will be profitable, but “We will continue to invest massively,” He also said expansion to at least one more country is on the table for this year.