South African free-to-air commercial
channel e.tv has significantly increased audience pull over the years. With the success of its local drama output like eKasi: Our Stories, the hugely popular Monday night drama series, the channel has effectively managed to capture the attention and support of many tv viewers.
It is said that the channel has 17 million viewers, which makes it the second most watched channel in South Africa after SABC1, which has a bigger footprint and 22 million viewers. The channel has in recent years been at the forefront of trying to bring variety in terms on content to South African viewers who do not subscribe to pay-to-view platforms like Dstv and TopTv.
This year is no different. The channel has new shows in store for viewers which will most likely make it more and more popular, including 52 newly commissioned episodes of Ekasi Stories.
As reported last week, e.tv will flight a new reality show starring media baits, Nonhle Thema and Khanyi Mbau, which will sure nab the channel some major numbers in the ratings given that the pair command a large number of interest due to their controversial brand.
In addition, this year Mzansi Love returns for a second season with 13 episodes, while the soapie Scandal! will increase from four days a week to five days as from 5 July and a new game show set in Cape Town is on the works.
Returning local series include the dance crew talent search reality show, Step Up or Step Out, and Rolling with…. The subject of the latter will be revealed closer to the show’s broadcast.
The channel has recently launched Cooking Gospel presented by former Simunye presenter Zandi Nhlapho, its first-ever Gospel-themed cooking show.
The channel’s local content quota at the end of December 2012 is reported to have been 47.9% which is above the requirement set by regulator ICASA.
Clearly someone at e.tv is paying attention to the plight of South African television viewers. Now that we may have some real competition between the channels perhaps this will prompt
certain channels to stop being arrogant and start commissioning shows with better content. – Phil Mphela
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