The streaming industry in India has seen significant growth in recent years, with a growing number of players offering a wide range of content to viewers. The advent of affordable high-speed internet has made it easier for people to access streaming platforms, and the popularity of mobile devices has also played a role in the industry’s growth. As a result, more and more people in India are turning to streaming platforms for their entertainment needs.
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the streaming industry in India. With the government implementing lockdowns and other restrictions to curb the spread of the virus, people have been spending more time at home turning to streaming platforms for entertainment. This has led to an increase in viewership and subscriptions for streaming platforms in India. Additionally, the shutdown of movie theaters and other public gathering places has also driven more people to streaming platforms to watch movies and other content.
I. The State of Streaming in India
Streaming Trends in India in 2022
After two years of lockdown, 2022 saw a return to a more normal way of life in India, with people shifting back to their usual routines and physical workplaces. Despite this, people remained in the habit of watching shows on streaming platforms. In fact, according to ExpressVPN’s report on streaming trends in India, platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Disney+ Hotstar recorded record breaking viewership on some of their content.
Netflix: The Most Watched Platform in 2022
In 2022, the 4th season of the series “Stranger Things” gained widespread popularity. Other popular Netflix shows that year included the second season of “Manifest,” the second season of “Mismatched,” the third season of “Never Have I Ever,” and the second season of “Delhi Crime.” As a result, Netflix was the most-watched platform in 2022.
Some of the very popular Bollywood films are also released on Netflix. Some of them are Alia Bhatt starrer “Darlings,” “Hit: The First Case,” “Thar,” “Jaadugar,” etc. All of these became quite famous among the Indian audience.
Amazon Prime: Extremely Popular in India
Amazon Prime is another major over-the-top (OTT) platform in India. In 2022, it released several popular series and films, including Bollywood movies such as “Gehraiyaan,” “Sharmaji Namkeen,” “Rocketry,” and “Jalsa.” Other popular films on the platform in 2022 included “Pushpa: The Rise,” “KGF: Chapter 2,” “Sita Ramam,” and “Runway 34,” which helped boost Amazon Prime’s popularity.
Amazon Prime released several popular web series in 2022, including “Panchayat – Season 2,” “The Boys,” “The Lord of the Rings,” and “Bestseller.” These shows contributed to the platform’s popularity among viewers.
Why is the OTT Platform Gaining More Viewers Than Theatres?
There are several reasons why OTT platforms, which offer streaming video content directly to viewers over the internet, are gaining more viewers than theaters in India:
Convenience: OTT platforms offer a convenient way for people to watch movies and other content from the comfort of their own homes without the need to go to a theater. This is particularly appealing during the Covid-19 pandemic when many theaters have been closed or have had limited capacity.
Flexibility: OTT platforms offer a wide range of content that can be accessed anytime, anywhere, and on various devices. This allows viewers to choose what they watch and when they watch it, providing a greater degree of flexibility compared to theaters.
Cost: OTT platforms often offer subscription-based models that allow viewers to access a large library of content for a low monthly fee. This can be more affordable than going to the movies, especially for families or those who watch a lot of content.
Quality: Many OTT platforms offer high-quality streaming options, including 4K resolution and Dolby Atmos sound, which can enhance the viewing experience.
Overall, the convenience, flexibility, cost, and quality of OTT platforms are likely contributing to their increasing popularity compared to theaters in India.
II. Rise of regional content
The growth of regional language content on streaming platforms
In recent years, there has been a notable growth of regional language content on streaming platforms in India. As more and more people in India have access to high-speed internet and streaming services, there is a growing demand for content in regional languages. This trend is particularly pronounced in smaller towns and cities, where a large portion of the population may not be fluent in English. As a result, streaming platforms are increasingly offering content in regional languages to cater to this demand. This trend has been beneficial for both viewers and content creators, as it has given a platform to a wider range of voices and stories.
Examples of popular regional shows and movies on streaming platforms
There are many popular regional shows and movies on streaming platforms in India. Some examples include:
- The Bengali crime thriller “Tarpor-E-Agomoni” on Hoichoi
- The Tamil action drama “Asuran” on Netflix
- The Marathi romantic comedy “Bioscope” on Amazon Prime Video
- The Malayalam thriller “Dhrishyam” on ZEE5
- The Telugu coming-of-age drama “Majili” on Disney+ Hotstar
These are just a few examples, and there are many more regional shows and movies available on streaming platforms in India.
The benefits of regional content for both viewers and creators
Regional content can have a number of benefits for both viewers and creators.
For viewers, regional content can provide a more personalized and relevant viewing experience. It can offer a deeper understanding and appreciation of local cultures, customs, and histories. It can also provide an opportunity for viewers to see themselves and their communities represented on screen, which can foster a sense of belonging and connection.
For creators, producing regional content can provide an opportunity to tell unique and diverse stories that may not be represented in mainstream media. It can also allow creators to reach and connect with specific audiences in their own communities and beyond. Additionally, producing regional content can provide economic opportunities for local talent and businesses, supporting the growth and development of the creative industries in a particular region.
Overall, regional content can enrich and diversify the media landscape, providing a range of benefits for both viewers and creators.
III. Growth of live streaming
The popularity of live streaming events in India, such as concerts and sports
Live streaming events, including sports events, have become increasingly popular in India in recent years. The growth of high-speed internet and the proliferation of affordable streaming devices have made it easier for people in India to access and watch live streaming events.
Sports events, in particular, have seen a surge in popularity on live streaming platforms in India. According to a report by Sports Business Insider, the Indian Premier League (IPL), a professional Twenty20 cricket league, was the most watched sporting event on live streaming platforms in India in 2020, with over 460 million views. The Indian Super League (ISL), a professional football league, also saw strong viewership on live streaming platforms, with over 300 million views in the same year.
Overall, the popularity of live streaming events, including sports events, is expected to continue to grow in India as more people gain access to high-speed internet and streaming devices. This presents an opportunity for creators and broadcasters to produce and distribute live streaming content to a growing audience in India.
The potential for live streaming to disrupt traditional broadcasting models
Live streaming has the potential to disrupt traditional broadcasting models by offering an alternative way for content to be produced, distributed, and consumed.
One of the key advantages of live streaming is that it allows creators to reach a global audience without the need for traditional distribution channels such as cable or satellite television. This enables creators to bypass traditional gatekeepers and reach their audience directly, potentially leading to a more diverse range of voices and perspectives being represented in the media.
Live streaming also allows for a more interactive and immediate viewing experience, as viewers can watch and engage with the content in real time. This can create a more dynamic and engaging viewing experience for audiences compared to traditional broadcasting models, which are often more static and less interactive.
Overall, the rise of live streaming has the potential to disrupt traditional broadcasting models by providing a more direct and interactive way for content to be produced, distributed, and consumed. Traditional broadcasting models will likely continue to evolve and adapt in response to the increasing popularity of live streaming.
The streaming industry is constantly evolving, and there is potential for growth and innovation in the future. Some potential trends and developments that could shape the industry include:
The continued growth of streaming platforms: The number of streaming platforms and subscribers is likely to continue to grow as more people gain access to high-speed internet and streaming devices. This could lead to increased competition among platforms, leading to the development of new and innovative features and services.
The expansion of live streaming: Live streaming has become increasingly popular in recent years, and this trend is likely to continue in the future. This could lead to the development of new interactive features and technologies that enhance the viewing experience and create new opportunities for creators.
The increasing importance of artificial intelligence: Artificial intelligence (AI) is already being used in various aspects of the streaming industry, such as content recommendation and moderation. This trend is likely to continue in the future. AI could be used to personalize the viewing experience and improve the efficiency of various processes within the industry.
The growth of virtual and augmented reality: Virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR) technologies have the potential to revolutionize the way we consume media and entertainment. VR/AR content could become more widely available on streaming platforms, offering a more immersive and interactive viewing experience.
Overall, the streaming industry is likely to continue to grow and evolve in the coming years, with new technologies and trends driving innovation and growth.