Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Astro to raise charges by 15% from next month

Yes, Astro to raise charges by 15% from next month. This is lousy news for those of us who derive such sweet pleasure from channel-switching from Disney to Chinese serials to Discovery Channel to NatGeo to Tamil movies, football, BBC, CCTV, old movie reruns, etc., etc., etc., and back to Disney.

Of course, we all have a choice, i.e., to stay with the subscription and suffer the increase or to cancel the subscription altogether. So, what will it be?

In the meantime, someone took the initiative and started an online petition though I doubt it'll even cause a ripple. She listed the following grouses. See if they ring a bell and if they do and you want your voice heard, why not sign the petition.

Dear Astro Customer Care and Astro Management,

I am disheartened with your decision to increase monthly fees.We strongly protest your decision for reasons shown below.

1. You have not improve your program quality. There are still a lot of repeated old programs. Repeating programs to provide more viewing opportunities to viewers is a lame excuse. For those who regularly watch Astro.. Its just too many Repeated Programs !!

2. You proudly claim to have more than a million subscribers. And the numbers are increasing everyday. You should be able to reduce your overall cost per subscriber through economy of scale. Increasing the fee cannot be substantiated.

3. You have advertisement revenues. Advertisements in ASTRO are just like those in free TVs! Subscribed TV should be free from advertisement in the first place.

4. You have monopoly of the market for 25 years for you to enjoy better profit and recover start-up costs. Your fee increase is simply abuse of such power granted to you by the government.

5. Your service quality is below expectation. We can't receive programs during bad weather. So, should we deduct a fee for every failure to receive programs ?

6. You have listed your company as public listed company. You should already have more working capital to finance your operation and not charging us any extra fees.

7. You should not pass the burden of failure to improve your company efficiency, mismanagement and unproductive operating cost to us. Increasing fees is an irresponsible act of blaming your failure on us, your customers.

8. Most customers are contracted subscribers under your promotion package.They cannot terminate the subscriptions as it will be deemed of a breach of contract. Your decision to charge extra fees is daylight robbery.

9. In order to enjoy certain latest movies or live telecast , we need to pay extra on top of the monthly subscription. Shouldn't that be included as perk of being an Astro subscriber rather than paying extra ?? If I need to pay extra for a particular live telecast for example of a boxing match why in the world do I need to pay monthly for the sports channel?? I would rather be watching free TV with advertisement since you have advertisement in most of the programs anyway.

Please reconsider your decision to restore public trust and customer confidence in your "esteemed" company.


  1. I don't have Astro, but I have SKY here in Italy, and whenever they raise their prices, it's a small increment, so no one notices, like €1 extra every 1 or 2 years.. and they would offset any grouches by offering something NEW and FANTASTIC!

    Astro would have achieved more than a sudden hefty 15% increase, I guess.. but what do I know?

  2. WHAT? They are awesome but they charge too much!

  3. mr krishnan not rich enough ??? maybe he is really making a clean sweep before he migrates...

  4. Petition is useless. The best thing to do is to stop subscribing to Astro. Astro is no gasoline. We can do without it.

    Even if Astro lowers the subscription fee, I wouldn't bother to watch. I am already too busy with my part-time MBA study. When I am free, I would rather go for travel. There is so much to do out there...

  5. zeroimpact10:01 AM

    I don't even watch anything other than discovery, ng, animal planet and cartoons
    When will the government see this and make sure it's not monopolized by making sure other can compete like take away the exclusive agreements that they have

  6. LB, you're luckier that us here with Astro then and their customer service is nothing to rave about.

    SuLee, monopoly rules, in this case but sucks for the consumer.

  7. Zewt, I don't think he needs to emigrate. With the kind of money he has, he can live anywhere and still be a Malaysian.

    KS, terminating the subscription could be one way but most of us (me included) need some sort of a diversion or some sort of frivolity in our life. Ah...the joys of not having to use the brain for a change. lol

  8. Z, yeah, Astro needs a competitor, alright.

  9. For years, I was like Zeroimpact and didn't watch much except Discovery and similar channels. Then I "shot" my TV (on purpose) and I haven't watched television programming in years.

    Read a book. Spend some quality time with someone you love.