Written by: Roshan Dwivedi
Netflix which has currently fallen behind Amazon’s Prime Video service and local players in India, is making efforts to climb up the ladder in India’s booming video-on-demand market. With an estimated 9.5 million Prime Video subscribers since its launch in December 2016, Amazon seems to be bang on in terms of understanding the rhythm of the Indian customer. Netflix seems to be lagging behind with an estimated 4.2 million subscribers despite it being more than a year since it’s launch in India.
Premium pricing and having a limited content library are two factors contributing towards Netflix’s stunted growth in India with the price being INR 500 per month for standard definition or $7.75. Amazon Prime is being offered for around $8 a year which seems way more cost-effective for the customer to prefer Amazon over Netflix. Now Netflix is looking for ways to fix its biggest weaknesses so as to attract the Indian customers. According to livemint.com, it could spend as much as $300 million on new, India- focused content.
Initially Netflix had made just 7% of its total library accessible for the Indian market which resulted in poor acquisition of subscribers. India’s first original production will be featured on Netflix globally “Abroad Understanding” which is an India-specific comedy special and that features famous Indian comedian Vir Das. Since comedy is the second-most watched genre in India, it should result in subscriber growth. From the current quarter, India’s two popular production houses Red Chillies Entertainment and Viacom 18 Motion Pictures will be providing streaming content on Netflix. The deal with Red Chillies will enable streaming 30 movie titles along with any new films to be produced over the next 3 years. Users will now be able to enjoy more video streaming content using less data with Netflix’s dynamic optimizer technology that let’s subscribers to stream 30 hours of content at the expense of a mere 2GB of data without impacting the quality of the content.
Amazon has a varied library of more than 50 Indian movies and is going to produce 18 new original shows for the Indian market. In comparison, Netflix has been dawdling to develop its content library in India. Amazon is reportedly going to spend $75 million this year which is higher than its domestic competitors Hotstar and Voot. It has an advantage over Netflix due to its efforts in improving its content library and affordable subscription which is why Netflix needs to act fast on its pricing. Read More