For Formula 1 fans in Kenya, there is some good news.
The country is one of the several new territories where F1 TV Pro is now accessible from.
F1 TV Pro is the top tier subscription package that allows subscribers to watch all the content on offer: live races, replays and other perks like access to the team radio, onboard cameras, live timing data, archived content (race and documentaries) etc.
All the new countries that have been added to the list of territories where F1 TV Pro is accessible from, which stands at 77 countries, are from the African continent.
10 other African countries are joining Kenya in getting access to top tier F1 content in the 2020 season which starts next month in Melbourne with the Australian Grand Prix. The 10 countries are: Angola, Botswana, Ghana, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
While F1 TV Pro is available both on desktop web browsers through the Formula 1 website as well as on mobile devices through the respective mobile platform apps, pricing in local currency (the Kenyan shilling) is only showing up on the mobile app.
On the desktop site, pricing for all the subscription options available (F1 TV Access Monthly, F1 TV Access Annual, F1 TV Pro Monthly and F1 TV Pro Annual) is in US dollars which is fast running out favour with global content streaming platforms as witnessed a few weeks ago with Netflix’s move to charge local users in Kenya shillings.
For Kshs 4,531, one can watch all Formula 1 races live on the go or, if they so wish, at their pleasure, alongside the many other perks the subscription comes with as briefly highlighted above.
Subscribing to F1 TV Pro via the Android app can be done via Google Play so that one doesn’t have to go through the hassle of setting up another payment means but what is used is the means of payment set up in a particular Google Play account.
Here is where it gets interesting. Given Google’s partnership with Safaricom that has seen it become possible to pay for apps, games and other content available on Google Play via mobile money platform M-Pesa, this means that the same can be used to pay for an F1 TV Pro subscription.
It is worth noting that the Kshs 4,531 ($45) for just Formula 1 content for a year is equivalent to the amount of money that MultiChoice Kenya charges subscribers every month in order to be able to watch Formula 1 races live on its Compact Plus package.
While, obviously, MultiChoice can justify the higher cost (oh, it even used to be higher before the price drop last year) because of the other content it bundles, Formula 1’s own streaming options remain attractive to those that have been paying just to watch Max Verstappen, Charles Leclerc and the other young drivers coming through every weekend. Plus, anyway, the bonuses that one gets with the app, like car telemetry are unmatchable, for the ardent fan.
It also makes a lot of sense to those, like yours truly, that are beholden to DStv because of football every week but don’t necessarily want to increase their monthly entertainment budgets now that a new Formula 1 season is upon us. It is much more manageable, of course, to get this F1 TV Pro subscription than inflating costs by as much as Kshs 24,000 in a year.
Unfortunately, unless you opt to mirror your phone (Miracast) or computer to your TV, if all you want is seeing Hamilton bag yet another race from your big screen or go back in time and watch Niki Lauda make history, that will be a challenge as the F1 TV app is not available on Android TV and the other smart TV platforms accessible to Kenyans. Even worse, casting from the mobile apps is not possible.
Header image source: F1.com