TVB Officially Launches myTV SUPER

By on April 18, 2016 in NEWS, TV Dramas

TVB Officially Launches myTV SUPER

TVB has officially launched their over-the-top TV service, myTV SUPER on April 18. Yesterday, numerous TVB artists including Wayne Lai (黎耀祥), Moses Chan (陳豪), Kristal Tin (田蕊妮), Nancy Wu (胡定欣), and more suited up to promote the service at a promotional event.

The event, which was aired live on Sunday night, was hosted by Carol Cheng (鄭裕玲), FAMA (農夫), and Bob Lam (林盛斌). The show was presented like a TVB Anniversary Gala event, with many artists showing up in red carpet dresses.

myTV SUPER consists of 30 channels that feature news, movies, dramas, and original programming. The service plans to show old TVB classic dramas on-demand, as well as new yet-to-air dramas such as the World War II epic No Reserve <巾幗梟雄之諜血長天> and the mini film series A Time of Love 2 <愛情來的時候2>. It also plans to show exclusive content from other countries like Japan and South Korea, including Saimdang, the Herstory, an upcoming South Korean drama starring Lee Young-ae (李英愛).

On the show, three-time TV King Wayne Lai appeared as Lau Sing, his character in 2010’s No Regrets <巾幗梟雄之義海豪情>. He revealed that the Rosy Business <巾幗梟雄> franchise would be one of the many classic TVB television series that would be re-airing on myTV SUPER’s classic channel.

Wayne said Lau Sing was one of his most favorite characters to play, saying, “Whether it’s the script or the character, [Lau Sing] is my favorite. However, because Lee Tim-sing (李添勝) is now retired, it’s impossible to get the original team back for another series.” The actor said he currently has two years left in his TVB contract.

Meanwhile, Ghost of Relativity <鬼同你OT> stars Kristal Tin and Nancy Wu appeared as characters from Disney fairytales. Rising actresses Jacqueline Wong (黃心穎), Sisley Choi (蔡思貝), and more appeared in Hanbok to promote myTV SUPER’s Korean channel, while actors like Oscar Leung (梁烈唯), Joey Law (羅天宇), etc. dressed as samurai to promote the Japanese channel.

Eddie Cheung (張兆輝), Sharon Chan (陳敏之), Elena Kong (江美儀), and Grace Wong (王君馨) were present to introduce their sex comedy drama Come With Me <性在有情>, which will be airing through myTV SUPER.

Sharon said, “I play a sex therapist on the show. I’ve learned a lot!” Elena then jokingly said, “I have a lot of experience but I play someone with no experience at all! It’s breakthrough acting!” Grace added, “And I am someone with no experience but I play someone who does!”

Source: Oriental Daily

This article is written by Addy for JayneStars.com.

16 comments to TVB Officially Launches myTV SUPER

  1. sasamii says:

    I watched this program last night, and it does seem as if TVB has spent a lot of money on this product, I imagine mostly in acquiring broadcast rights for programs. I definitely see this appealing more to the older audience though, as many of these programs are already available online.

    What I don’t understand though, is why TVB has restricted this set-top product to Hong Kong only. Their overseas appeal is massive, and there aren’t currently many ways to legally view TVB. Obviously, pricing would likely be higher, but I think there would be a market!

    Who knows, maybe this is TVB’s next step in their plan for world domination.

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    • linvin8 replied:

      @sasamii I think it’s because you need the physical boxset to access the content. It looks something like this: http://unwire.hk/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/mytvsuper_08-694×390.jpg

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    • mtt84 replied:

      @sasamii Based on a news article I have read, they do consider releasing mytv super box in the future to overseas markets, but there is no time plan yet. I guess they want to focus on HK viewers at the moment and that is more than enough for them.

      TVB was already active for many years in overseas markets, but the amount of subscriptions have decreased a lot in the recent years, because of piracy (illegal downloading or streaming) and because of the high monthly subscription costs.

      Now I have heard from friends in my country, the monthly subscription costs have decreased a lot compared to a couple of years ago. In order for the success of this product in overseas markets, the monthly costs should not be too high or else people are still going to the illegal route. Also, TVB still has contracts with cable providers in some countries (including the US I believe) to air their content, so that’s why they can’t release a similar product.

      TVB is already losing viewers in their home market because of ViuTV based on recent reports. I guess their TV market share is going down a lot more in the future when two new TV channels arrive (maybe this year or next year). The new TV competitors could release a similar product to overseas markets for a lower price compared to TVB. I would be certainly interested in that.

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      • sasamii replied:

        @linvin8 True, there is a physical box to buy, but those could be readily made available in stores around Chinatown areas. Let’s see if TVB goes this route after this initial rollout.

        @mtt84 You’re right, TVB does have current contracts with certain overseas cable providers and such. In the US, I believe the only distributor of TVB content is Dish Network, which is a satellite-based provider.

        I actually looked into Dish Network a little bit for my parents, and it seemed like it would cost over $80 USD a month ($50 for their general package, and then additional $30 for the East Asian channels package which includes TVB). That is pretty pricey… I could see how TVB could grab a nice market share by charging less (for only their channels, of course). Maybe they will try, after their current contracts expire.

        As for the other HK channels… let’s see what kind of content they release!

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      • llwy12 replied:

        @mtt84 The piracy thing is definitely an issue, but to be honest, it has been an issue for more than a decade already and will only get worse with continued advancements in technology – in other words, the piracy issue is never going to go away and in many respects has already become a way of life.  There is only so much TVB can do in terms of piracy and unfortunately, much of it is out of their hands.  This is why I feel that TVB should stop wasting their time and money being the ‘anti-piracy Nazi’ that they’ve been the past couple years (I’m starting to think that they have a team of people scouring the Internet 24/7 and issuing ‘cease and desist’ letters the minute they see a website popup with their programs, lol) —  instead they should focus on the things that will actually make themselves better, such as improving the quality of their productions, investing money in the right places (i.e. better equipment, good scriptwriters, etc.), coming up with a better marketing strategy for their products, etc. etc.

        @sasamii Yes, Dish is the only cable provider allowed to distribute TVB here in the U.S. For the TVB channels alone (the package is 7 or 8 channels I believe, but we only watch 3 consistently), it costs $56 and some change a month. So yes, it’s still relatively expensive compared to the variety and number of channels we’d get with a regular cable subscription.  Luckily, the content we get here on the TVB satellite channels is much better than what we’d get on TVB’s free-to-air channel in HK (we pretty much get everything that airs on TVB’s regular channel plus stuff that is only available on their cable channels in HK).  The lineup and overall structure are better too, as they show a lot of older series and even variety programs on the channels here, both on weekdays and weekends, in addition to the new stuff that we get at the same time as HK audiences….and there seem to be fewer commercials too, plus the news programs are more varied.   I actually did a comparison once between the content we get here versus what’s on the free TVB Jade channel in HK and came to the conclusion that there is really nothing to watch on TVB’s regular Jade channel in HK outside of the nightly ‘golden timeslot’ (sitcom + 2 series) and a variety series or two on the weekend – oh and I always get super-annoyed with the deluge of commercials on the regular channel plus the same news report that repeats itself over and over again like every other hour.  No wonder TVB has to ‘buff up’ their content for myTV Super – even the most die-hard TVB fans in HK would likely refuse to fork out even a dollar to subscribe to myTV Super if it had only the same content as their regular channel….

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    • phixster replied:

      @sasamii Actually TVB already does have a TV set-top box overseas which is basically the exactly the same myTV. It has all the live TVB channels including Jade, variety, kids and classic channels, VOD for a lot of their series (including all the old classic ones) and lots of the Mainland channels as well. They recently added KBS world too. Think TVpad but a legal TVB version. So essentially overseas audiences have already had this service for more than a year now.

      I guess it is only limited to countries where there is no existing contract with cable providers. The only problem with the set top box they are selling is that it does require a monthly subscription fee which is expensive and therefore doesn’t make it competitive with the illegal services available overseas.

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      • kk12345 replied:

        @mtt84 “TVB was already active for many years in overseas markets, but the amount of subscriptions have decreased a lot in the recent years”

        That’s due to Korea dramas. Demand for Korea dramas goes up, less demand for TVB dramas. Most viewers don’t want to watch old dramas.

        TVB’s biggest competitor is Korea. Other countries have more or less switched from buying TVB dramas to buying Korea dramas for certain timeslots. If they still think their programs have appeal overseas, they are just kidding themselves.

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  2. aiya says:

    what I fail to understand here is the strategic rationale behind this major marketing move.

    I agree that this service appeals primarily to the mature audience, especially those who are constantly driven on by nostalgia for the golden years of the 80s and 90s. But the problem is that TVB already has this audience in its pocket; in fact, they are the network’s “bread and buttre”. What TVB has done here is nothing (nada) to address its problems of attracting the younger viewers, especially millenials who should be the future viewer base for TVB if the network planned on surviving on to another generation..

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    • llwy12 replied:

      @aiya Not surprised actually, as this is the same way that TVB has always done things. Most of their policies, practices, and overall mentality are still in the Stone Age and really haven’t changed much over the past 40+ years. Their target audience hasn’t changed much either and is pretty much the same ‘group’ that they targeted back in the 70s, 80s, 90s, etc. – to this day, they are still trying to target the ‘brainless see-lai’ (housewife) crowd and the traditional families who have the TV on in the background while they eat dinner.  Since their target audience hasn’t changed, of course TVB isn’t going to make any drastic changes to their series or programs (or marketing strategy, policies, thought process, etc), which as we all know, is one reason why their series / TV programs are so formulaic and lack depth.  During the earlier myTV soft launch last month, I remember one of TVB’S execs (I think it was Peter Au) said that with myTV Super, they are not afraid of losing audiences because they are merely taking audiences from the ‘right pocket’ and now putting them into the ‘left pocket’ (basically switching the audiences who watched their regular free channel in the past to watching their paid subscription channel now).  With that comment alone, it’s not hard to see why TVB has gotten to the dismal state that it has…

      As for why TVB doesn’t roll out these boxes to overseas – my guess is that they probably will at some point, but not in the exact same format as they do in HK (of course, this is assuming that they don’t abandon the project in the future, which they’ve done more often than not in recent years so it’s hard to say).  Keep in mind that TVB Jade channel is a free-to-air channel in HK only — in most places outside of HK, there is already some sort of paid subscription involved to watch TVB content legally.  In this regard, it’s really not surprising that TVB is not in a rush to cater to overseas viewers (for the record, when I say “overseas”, I mean outside of HK and Mainland China), since there is really no ‘immediate’ benefit to them – in HK, they can essentially ‘force’ their current audiences to pay for something they didn’t have to pay for before, whereas with overseas, they can’t, since we’re already ‘paying’ to watch TVB content through cable subscription.  With all that said though, I also feel that their marketing strategy is dumb and most of their management should be fired….but that’s another rant for another day, lol.

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      • aiya replied:

        @llwy12 IMHO, the long term picture does not bode well for TVB. For one, its target , the canto-speaking-only audience, is changing and not growing. Compounding this unfavorable trend is the netowrk’s antiquated studio system approach to create content in which TVB asuumes control from talent recruitment to final product distribution, a very expensive and cumbersome to serve a market of the about 10 million at most.

        It is very revealing when one does an industrial comparison with the meteoric rise of Hunan TV in China. Granted the latter has a larger market, but it also faced stiffer competition. what Hunam TV has done is focusing in on delivering the contents that its audience wanted and minimzimg their involvement in production. In fact, a majority of their contents are not internally produced so they can afford to be nimble in terms of the programmatic selection.

        The model that Hunan TV employs actally is the same as those used by most TV Networks across the globe except for TVB. I guess TVB has inherited this arcane studio system from Run Run Shaw’s film studio where talents were indentured by slave contracts and very little innovation could be achieved in such enclosed environment.

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      • llwy12 replied:

        @aiya Agreed.  The sad thing is that it has been very apparent in the last decade that the antiquated system TVB uses has been getting harder and harder for them to support, mostly from a manpower perspective, yet they don’t seem to want to do anything about it.  Several years back, a bunch of the veteran and supporting artists who had left said that no one had contacted them to renew their contracts and when they tried to talk to the artists’ department about it, no one would give them the time of day, so they decided to leave, since it appeared that TVB didn’t need them anymore.  When TVB’s former chairman Norman Leung heard this, he actually acknowledged that they were ‘short-staffed’ in a few areas, especially in the artists’ department, resulting in some things slipping through the cracks – at the time, he had actually committed to fixing this issue, but since he resigned as chairman not long after that, obviously nothing got changed/fixed.  TVB’s archaic system coupled with their ultra-conservative ways and antiquated policies (plus incompetent management of course), are all things that will do them in faster than they realize.

        In a sense, this is where ViuTV was smart in that they partially abandoned the studio system by not signing any artists to their station.  They ARE keeping the production of their series and programs in-house, however they made it a point not to limit themselves in terms of artists, so they can essentially collaborate with anyone they want to, which is a good thing.  Though with that said, the part that might become a problem is ViuTV actually taking things a bit too far in my opinion by going the complete opposite extreme with their ‘no holds barred’ approach to their programs (albeit still within the confines of broadcasting rules somehow).  Case in point – ViuTV has been grabbing entertainment news headlines in HK the past few days with all the controversy surrounding the vulgar and sensational content of a few of their shows — their late night talk show   晚吹  for example, which is an interview show that covers controversial topics, has their hosts and the guests being interviewed cursing left and right, with some episodes involving vulgar acts and practical jokes on the guests (there was one episode that actually had nudity in it, which obviously had to be censored due to broadcasting rules).  While their content is definitely ‘different’ and it’s obvious they are catering to non-traditional younger audiences rather than the traditional, ultra-conservative TVB/ATV see-lai crowd, it seems a bit too extreme to start off like that, especially when ViuTV is still trying to establish itself in the market.  Seems like a ‘middle ground’ approach would be more practical given the circumstances, though I guess they are playing off the sentiment of discontent in society and people’s habits of immediately taking to social media to discuss controversial content. I sure hope they aren’t shooting themselves in the foot with their current programming strategy!

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  3. happybi says:

    hmmm not sure how this will work but seem interesting enough. Wondering if the Japanese and Korea dramas will be redubbed to Cantonese or only have subtitles? Because if with subtitle, there is a lot of free streaming site that have sub already. No need to pay for it.

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  4. vodka says:

    so can anyone clarify me, is this like netflix but TVB? I would totally dig for this service just for the classic content those were the true golden times.

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    • mtt84 replied:

      @vodka yes, sort of. You can watch live tv or video’s on demand. Netflix is basically only a video on demand service.

      Even TVB CEO Mark Lee Po-on sees this product as a Chinese version of Netflix. However, there is already a competitor of course in Hong Kong, LeEco (well known in China) is offering a tv box in HK offering thousands Chinese movies, tv series, tv shows, etc you can watch on demand for a fixed amount each month (along with English Premiership live football to attract customers).

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    • llwy12 replied:

      @vodka According to TVB’s CEO (or is he chairman now?  can never remember their titles, lol) Mark Lee, they are viewing myTV Super as their version of Netflix (I think he had even said that publicly when introducing the product at FILMART).  As far as the classic content is concerned though – well, kind of depends on what you consider “classic”.  So far, the so-called ‘classic’ series that TVB has talked about showing on their myTV Super classic channel aren’t truly ‘classics’, as most of them are from the early 2000s period…of course, that doesn’t mean they won’t show earlier series, but to be honest, I really don’t feel that this current group of management even know what ‘classic’ is, since most of them weren’t with TVB during the station’s ‘golden age’ – and just like with everything else, TVB politics will likely dictate what they decide to air and what they don’t.

      To me, the GOTV concept that TVB had previously was a better idea.  With that, TVB essentially had their own TV program repository where the intention was to upload all of their TV series (including TV movies and variety programs) from the past 49 years to a website and allowed audiences to access that repository via monthly subscription.  Of course, they were still a long ways off from uploading all content, but all of their true ‘classics’ and most popular series over the past 4 decades were already up and running on there.  Now THAT would’ve truly been worth subscribing to, especially since many of the series from the 70s, 80s, and early 90s are so hard to find nowadays.  But of course, TVB abandoned that idea and instead decided to replace GOTV with this myTV Super thing, which to be honest, is a completely different concept.  At least with GOTV, as a subscriber, you could watch anything you wanted (limited to what TVB has uploaded of course) whereas with myTV Super, you’re at the mercy of what TVB decides to air….

      With all that said…if you’re an ATV fan, then it might be worth subscribing to myTV Super, since there will be an ATV channel where TVB will be airing all of the classic series that they bought from ATV…note however that most of the ATV series they bought are the REALLY old ones from like the RTV/early ATV days (series such as “Crocodile Tears” and “Fatherland” for example). There are some series from the 80s and 90s they bought too, but not as many compared to the older ones.

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  5. tiger6 says:

    so $68pm for the box and $38pm for apps to watch normal tv? doesn’t look like any new shows, just a new channel with same shows that were on previous channels.

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