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Indians don’t want to pay for video: survey

t a time when Netflix, the world’s biggest video streaming service, has entered India, a survey has shown that only 23 per cent of Indians have shown the propensity to pay for video content, while downloads via torrent clearly outnumber those from subscription-based websites.

The survey comes as a part of Global Video Insights Report by Vuclip. The insights are the result of a comprehensive online survey of 4,600 users across six developing markets, including India, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, UAE and Philippines, and four developed ones including USA, UK, Singapore and Australia.

The survey insights fall under the four broad categories of over the top (OTT) video on demand service features which deliver on the promise of providing them an unbuffered viewing experience, device preference, types of video content consumed and video consumption behaviour in terms of preference to stream or download.

Netflix plans in India start from Rs 500 a month after a month of free trial, and most analysts say the US-based firm’s entry is positive for the video streaming industry, given the evolution of smartphones and 4G as well with the entry of Reliance Jio. Firms like Twitter are looking at video consumption as their next big bet in India.

“In the last 10 years, we’ve seen the explosion of video content on the Internet in India. Not surprising, given that visual media performs well in India. The country is diverse. So, what we are doing is responding to a great 2015 with respect to video,” Rishi Jaitly, Vice-President Media for Asia Pacific, Middle East and North Africa, Twitter, had told The Hindu in a recent interview. There was a 400 per cent increase in consumption of video in India, he added.

According to Maybank Kim Eng Securities, the entry of Netflix will expand this market, which is expected to pick up following the national launch of 4G services by major telcos this year. India may have 400 million 4G subs in the next three to four years as compared to the current 90 million, which promises to be a big market for video streaming companies, it added.

Religare Institutional Research data said it expects smartphones to be the primary video access device. “While Netflix’s pricing at Rs 500 per month is expensive for the Indian market, the entry of multiple distribution platforms will continue to fuel demand for local content,” it added.

However, survey findings said the frequency of viewing TV in India is significantly higher than in developed nations, with 87 per cent respondents choosing the TV as a preferred device for entertainment with family as against 72 per cent in developed markets.

In the survey, 91 per cent viewers indicated that in addition to live broadcast, they prefer television for long form content like films and videos with run times of more than ten minutes. Only 33 per cent of smartphone users in India use their device to view such content, it added.

Interestingly, the report pointed out that the propensity to purchase videos is significantly higher in developed nations at 52 per cent when compared to 23 per cent in India, but users in developed nations prefer to stream videos due to better network connectivity, compared to Indians.

Meanwhile, in India, laptops are used both to stream (30 per cent) and download (70 per cent) while smartphones are largely preferred for streaming (65 per cent) only on account of limited storage space, the report said, adding that streaming over a WiFi connection is the most preferred as the viewing experience is better.

The report also pointed out that mobile network usage is significantly higher (65 per cent) in India unlike in developed markets, where usage of WiFi and mobile networks for accessing mobile internet is proportionate (51 per cent and 49 per cent respectively).

The higher mobile network usage can be attributed to less free WiFi zones in the country. This is also the reason why video consumption while travelling is considerably higher in India (56 per cent) as compared to developed nations (46 per cent), it added.

Also, smartphones are the most preferred device for personal video consumption in both markets, while PC and laptops are used more for viewing videos with family and friends in India.

Viewers across markets are showing an increased preference for video content on smartphones with larger screen sizes.

The majority of mobile video viewing in developed markets is on smartphones in the five inch-plus category; In India, this is on smaller devices, typically in the 4.6-5-inch range, the report said. The firm’s survey also said 23 per cent of viewers in India view buffering as a key inhibitor to video consumption on smartphones, and have indicated their preference for OTT videoon demand services .

One-third of users in India remove the downloaded content the same day they view it, indicating the prevalence of ‘pseudo streaming’ due to limited storage space.

Viewers across markets are showing an increased preference for video content on smartphones with larger screen sizes

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Printable version | Jul 30, 2021 8:41:05 PM |

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