VTC Now, the over-the-top app with over 1.3 million downloads since the ASIAD 2018, had to temporarily suspend its service since this June due to financial difficulties. Hopefully, the service will be reactivated by the end of July.
|VTC Now temporary suspended its services until the end of July |
Since early June 2019, VTC Now application has been inaccessible, both on the mobile application as well as on the VTC Now box. The entire VTC Now system has been stalling for several months now, after discontinuing the streaming of all content. Currently, only one YouTube channel, VTC Now, is active but audience comments have been turned off on the channel's videos.
The vtcnow.vn website also redirects visitors to vtc.gov.vn.
Customers spend VND1.5 million ($65.22) on buying VTC Now's box, but now VOD and VTC Now applications are not available, forcing them to download other free applications to watch instead.
A representative from VTC Now said that VTC Now has to switch to a domestic service provider, the service interruption is expected to be over by July. Previously, VTC Now developed the service on the platform of US providers Brightcove and Accedo. However, it will move to co-operate with a domestic infrastructure provider, according to ITCNews.
Co-operation with a local unit will help VTC Now reduce its financial burdens, as well as take longer steps. This time, VTC Digital Television is facing great financial difficulties and does not directly hold the technology it relies on, which means it cannot develop its own digital content
Also according to VTC's representative, OTT content in Vietnam is not profitable just yet, so its long-term development needs to somehow incorporate increasing revenue and profitability. In the near future, VTC Now will co-operate with domestic partners to develop interactive content and plans to charge for its services on VTC Now sooner than expected to increase revenue capacity.
Information of VTC Digital Television's financial difficulties has been aired by many of its staff since the beginning of 2019. On July 1, 2019, director of VTC Digital Television sent a letter to all VTC employees. Accordingly, by the end of the first quarter of 2019, VTC's income and production expenditure imbalance was somewhat stabilised, adding that he hoped the difficulty would be solved.