There’s a new DStv Explora hoping to take the space below your TV and its got a much smaller hard-drive compared to the current model.

Just how much smaller? DStv head of broadcast technology, Nyiko Shiburi, tells us its 1TB down from the 2TB HDD in the current model.

MultiChoice opted for a smaller hard-drive so it could make the decoder a much smaller form factor. Shiburi also says, customers are recording less and less content so it stands to reason that the hard drive would be smaller. However, Shiburi was quick to point out that, despite this smaller form factor, HEVC H.265 compression technology allows DStv to put the same amount of content on Catch-up, because its almost 50% more efficient.

This does mean that MultiChoice will have to re-encode a lot of content to match the new compression.

If you’re not keen on the new decoder just yet, MultiChoice has said it will be running two versions of the catch-up service to support the older Explora as well as the new one. There are also no plans to phase out the current Explora just yet and customers will be notified should this happen.

“The challenge we are facing is the decreasing value of the rand which is making the cost of manufacturing decoders more expensive,” Shiburi says.

Because of this, where possible MultiChoice has sourced components locally. For instance, the plastics used in the decoder are all manufactured locally in East London but the CPU and hard-drive are sourced from the international market.

Goodbye to your army of controllers

Paired with the new Explora will be a new A7 remote control. The new controller has a rather nifty feature in that when you pick it up the buttons illuminate which sounds great for when you’re watching movies at night.

The new remote will also alert users when the battery is running low so that rather than pressing a button harder and harder because the light is still working you’ll know when its time to replace the batteries.

MultiChoice has also decided to bring an end to the slew of remotes users often have to use. The new remote can be programmed through Simple Set to control TV sets produced by major brands such as LG and Samsung as well as any other electronics you use such as an amplifier.

The new A7 remote will also be able to be paired with all the current DStv decoders.

Now for the price, this new decoder will set you back R1 499 when it lands in stores in mid October. Alternatively you can pay the Explora off and get a DStv Premium package for R899 p/m for 24 months.