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No TV licence needed to stream on big-screen telly unless it has built-in tuner

11 June 2021 4:16 PM
Tags:
TV licence
SABC TV licence

Zain Johnson talks to Jan Vermeulen, Editor at Large at mybroadband.co.za about when you do and do not need a SABC licence.
  • Many South Africans have shifted from broadcast content to streaming on their TV sets and other devices
  • You currently do not need a SABC TV licence to stream unless the TV set as a built-in tuner
  • There are several monitors and smart displays that do not require a TV licence but still offer the big-screen viewing experience

Over the last few years, many households in the country have shifted from watching broadcasted content to primarily using online video streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Showmax.

If you only use these services to watch content, your display actually does not require a built-in TV tuner to receive the analogue or digital signals used to transmit free-to-air channels such as SABC 1, SABC 2, S3, and E-TV.

Does that mean you don't need a TV licence to watch streaming content?

Where this leaves us with the SABC trying everything it can to expand the definition of when a TV licence is required so that you will not only need a TV licence for a device that is capable of receiving a specifically terrestrial broadcast signal.

Jan Vermeulen, Senior journalist - MyBroadband.co.za

As far as I know, you don't even need a TV licence for a DStv decoder that receives a broadcast signal but one that happens to come from space.

Jan Vermeulen, Senior journalist - MyBroadband.co.za

Currently, you need a SABC TV licence for any TV or radio with a tuner built-in.

Jan Vermeulen, Senior journalist - MyBroadband.co.za

Most TVs sold in the country still come with built-in tuners - which would require you having a TV licence - but there are several monitors and smart displays available in South Africa that don’t require a TV licence, but still offer the big-screen viewing experience of a TV.

There are very large monitors usually built for gaming that can be used for streaming.

Jan Vermeulen, Senior journalist - MyBroadband.co.za



11 June 2021 4:16 PM
Tags:
TV licence
SABC TV licence

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