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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Jul 3, 2018

For Fans Of Video Games Like Dota & Counter Strike, Cignal TV Partners With Astro For ESports In The Philippines

ARE YOU fond of playing video games like DOTA and Counter Strike? Well, here's good news for you. The largest eSports (competition using video games) platform in our region, EGG Network, now has blanket coverage over the entire island nation of the Philippines with its latest partnership with Cignal TV, the country’s biggest pay TV operator. The partnership comes in time for Filipinos to catch the biggest Dota 2 event of the year, The International 8, on Cignal’s DTH and IPTV services. Because of this partnership, for the first time in the Philippines, eGG Network will be available in HD through Cignal’s OTT platform Cignal Play, and to its IPTV service Cignal Roku. Filipino esports fans can also catch major esports tournaments LIVE on the 24/7 channel on Cignal, as the eGG Network was only available to TVs in the Philippines from 6am-12am prior to this partnership.

EGG Network brings 24/7 tournament coverage, game features, game streams and local content to Cignal TV’s 2-million strong subscriber base. Besides the channel and content, both Astro and Cignal TV have plans to collaborate in a series of local esports tournament and leagues reaching out to millennial, esports fans and talents. EGG Network (Channel 99) is also available to Cignal postpaid subscribers starting at Plan 250 and to prepaid subscribers starting at Plan 300.

Jane Jimenez Basas, Cignal TV president and CEO says: “Cignal TV is formalizing our partnership with ASTRO, a champion of the eSports industry in Southeast Asia. Through this partnership, we expect to reach millions of homes and provide our subscribers all the international tournaments and even local content that is relevant to Filipinos.”

Among the popular eSports tournaments that Filipino enthusiasts can watch are League of Legends, Dota 2, Counter Strike: Global Offensive, Hearthstone, Heroes of the Storm, Starcraft II and many more. ASTRO’s Chief of Sports CK Lee, believes that engagement is a key objective in the partnership. “eSports is growing and we wish to engage Filipino enthusiasts through the eGG Network. It is good for eSports to have these platforms through Cignal TV. In terms of popularity and growth, the Philippines is growing fast and ranks close to Malaysia,” Lee said.

Private and public support is important for the eSports industry to continue to flourish in the country. This is the reason why Edward Ng Sun Kong, ASTRO Senior Assistant VP for eSports & Digital Services is upbeat. “For eSports to flourish, the private and public sector should work hand in hand. The collaboration with Cignal TV is a prime example of how the private sector can boost the development of eSports. Subscribers can share the thrill of eSports through TV 24/7. Every subscriber can have access to regional and worldwide events.”

For Vitto Lazatin, Vice President, Head of Content Acquisition of Cignal TV, eSports is definitely a good thing. “ESports instills the competitive spirit in Filipinos of a wide range of ages. Filipinos have the native ability and skill to compete. And Filipinos are good at it.”

The channel, which officially started broadcasting on June 7, brings 24/7 tournament coverage, game features, game streams and local content to Cignal’s 2-million strong subscriber base. EGG Network channel 99 is available to Cignal postpaid subscribers starting at Plan 250 and to prepaid subscribers starting at Plan 300. EGG Network is also available on Cignal Play and Cignal over Roku.