Johannesburg - If you have a fibre connection and you’re not quite sure where to start when it comes to entertainment, the first thing you should probably do is cancel your satellite TV subscription. There’s a new player on the scene and it wants to be everything DStv is not, which is a good thing for consumers.
Before you get started, you need to have a TV with at least one HDMI port, broadband internet and a broadband router. It’s best to research all fibre providers servicing your area before signing up, and try to go for a symmetrical connection, that is, identical upload and download speeds; and uncapped data, depending on the size of your household and consumption habits.
The Kwesé Play set-top box powered by Roku provides over 100 streaming channels, all free. As an official content partner, Netflix is also thrown in free for the first three months.
The Kwesé Play device is small enough to fit on to the palm of your hand, and comes with everything you need to get connected: remote with batteries, power adapter, instruction manual and an HDMI cable. The remote has dedicated buttons for Kwesé, Netflix, YouTube and Red Bull TV. The device also has an Ethernet port for a wired internet connection; and USB and micro SD ports to view your own content.
It’s a simple plug and play set-up, and the sign-up process can be started from the device and continued on a browser.
Watch this video to learn more about Kwesé Play:
I experienced initial delays because the format of my mobile number was not correct, and this was not pointed out on the setup page.
The process to claim your free three months of Netflix is simple, and can be done directly from the app on the Kwesé Play box. If you’re an existing Netflix South Africa subscriber, you will still qualify for the free three months.
Before you start streaming, choose between a 720p or a full 1 080p HD video output, especially if you want to save on data for capped fibre accounts.
The landing homepage has nine preloaded channels, but you can go in and select more from over 100 channels. The list isn’t grouped by category, which feels somewhat messy. The selection includes news, sports, lifestyle, education, music, movies, TV series, kids and games.
I found the quality of the content on some channels to be average, and the music channels a bit dated. Netflix is by far the best channel on offer and is worth the R129 a month subscription after your free three months are up. Bloomberg TV and Al Jazeera are refreshing ways to get news, however, stay away from The Movie Channel because the name is deceptive: it only plays movie trailers. You can find cooking channels; video game channels; TV series under Made for TV and M2M, which has some original content; and even games. The remote is used to play games; unlimited entertainment for the kids. Sport content is available but don’t expect it to be localised. There should be something for everyone.
Watch this video to learn more about Kwesé TV:
Overall, the Kwesé Play box is a good start for anyone who has recently signed up for fibre and is not sure where or how to start streaming TV. There are many Android boxes available to purchase online, most hovering around R999 to R1 500, and the Apple TV at a higher cost.
Kwesé Play is priced at R1 599 one-off, which streamlines everything for you, and the dedicated remote buttons are a nice touch.
You no longer have to pay a premium to access various TV channels.