MultiChoice is advising its DStv subscribers to upgrade to newer decoders to avoid possible problems with repairs and missing out on future services.
While MultiChoice is not phasing out DStv decoders, certain older models cannot be repaired anymore due to unavailability of parts.
Good news is that anyone with decoder insurance will receive a new DStv decoder free of charge.
For those without decoder insurance, MultiChoice has a trade-in discount on the new DStv HD single-view decoder and the DStv Explora decoder.
"Customers can take their older model decoder and their smart card to a MultiChoice Walk-in Centre or a DStv agency to do the swop or trade-in," MultiChoice said.
"The trade-in discount can be done whether the box is broken or not," the company stated, adding that subscribers can continue to use any decoder to access DStv.
Older DStv decoders may lose out on services
MultiChoice said that some of the older decoders couldn't cope with the growing number of DStv services on offer.
"When these decoders were first launched, we had a handful of channels on DStv - now there are over 100."
The older decoders may experience missing channels, an incomplete TV guide, or freeze-ups.
The SD PVR decoders have an additional challenge. "We're launching a new satellite at the beginning of 2017, which will position our channels on low and high band frequencies," MultiChoice said.
The SD PVR decoder can only receive low-band frequencies. This means that SD PVR users will lose out on any channels or services made available on high band.
Affected DStv decoders
The DStv decoders that are affected are as follows:
Single view decoder models - 660, 720, 720i, 910, 933, 990
Dual View decoders, SD PVR decoders, and UEC 4-tuner HD PVR decoders.
MultiChoice highlighted that it stopped manufacturing the SD PVR and Dual View decoders more than 7 years ago.
"The 6- and 9- series single view decoders and the UEC 4-tuner HD PVR have not been available on the market for more than 2 years," the company said.
"The reality is that technology does age and, like a cellphone, needs to be replaced from time-to-time."