Its the ultimate war to be the content czar. Video streaming today has become bigger than ever as entertainment takes on a brand new form. With over 30 frontline players already in the race, it’s the second such invasion to rock the video space. Pay TV being the first.
Video streaming platforms have redefined content as we know it, bringing endless entertainment and variety to our screens. But with so much to watch in so little time, who amongst the lot has managed to play the right shots?
The Fight Club
Though not a quintessential video streaming platform, YouTube’s reputation as the big daddy of streaming makes it hard to be ignored. And quite rightly so, as it turns out to be the most popular video streaming platform for close to 50% Piplsay respondents. This is not surprising considering the fact that YouTube is accessible to a whopping 80% of the internet population who enjoy a huge variety of diverse premium content for free. But that’s not the only thing that other over-the-top (OTT) players have to worry about. The Google-owned site is all set to launch its own ad-free subscription service and original shows, putting itself into the main league.
Amongst the traditional players, Netflix seems to be the hot favorite followed closely by its global rival Amazon Prime Video
This is quite interesting considering that the two streaming giants were of no match to the popularity enjoyed by domestic players like Hotstar and Voot just a year back. But with a strong and evolving content library, superior technology and aggressive marketing, the two players seem to have made the right moves and noise.
With huge viewership coming in from smaller cities and towns, OTT players are increasingly focusing on regional content to stay relevant. While domestic players like Hotstar and Sony Liv are ahead in this race, others like Amazon and Netflix have had to catch up, making huge investments to ramp up their local content library. But despite this new push, the demand for English content continues to remain high as revealed by the Piplsay survey.
While West seems to be the only region to prefer Hindi content more, South scores high in its preference for regional ones
Content is King
Content is the holy grail that differentiates video streaming platforms from one another and keeps them ahead in the race. While Cricket and movies continue to the biggest attractions, genres like comedy are slowly coming into the mainstream as seen by the popularity of stand up’s and shows like Comicstaan. Another big draw is the web television series, introduced and made popular by international shows like Narcos, House of Cards etc. From investing in original productions to getting exclusive rights to shows, OTT players are leaving no stone unturned to tap into this demand. Be it Hotstar bagging exclusive broadcasting rights to Game of Thrones or Amazon launching its own Indian originals like Inside out, Mirzapur etc.
In what can come as good news to OTT players, a whopping 70% Piplsay respondents seem to subscribe to these services as opposed to watching it for free
Streaming services for long have struggled to get consumers to subscribe to them, most of whom drop out after the free trails. But their growing popularity along with factors like competitive pricing, promotional offers etc seem to be working well for them. Not forgetting the aggressive on-ground and social media marketing employed to generate the required buzz.
Video streaming platforms have revolutionized entertainment as we know it, giving pay TV a run for its money. With the lure to watch what we want and when we want, they provide an endless visual treat with absolutely no intention to retreat.