Technological innovations have disrupted India’s traditional education system, and the shutting down of schools and universities in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted more than 500 Mn students in India. Online learning platforms are rapidly growing in all educational segments – primary, secondary, higher education, test preparation, and casual learning. India’s e-learning market is highly fragmented, with a few niche players operating in the various segments, and several start-ups with innovative offerings are gradually gaining ground.
The e-learning market in India was valued at INR 65.00 Bn in 2019 and is expected to reach a value of INR 498.26 Bn by 2025, expanding at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of ~36.88% during the 2020-2025 forecast period.
Based on the category, the online reskilling and certification segment dominated India’s e-learning market, whereas online primary and secondary supplemental education is estimated to be the largest segment by 2025. Moreover, the higher education market is currently experiencing a lack of clarity on regulations. Similarly, the test preparation market, language, and casual learning segment are expected to expand rapidly during the forecast period.
Lower-cost, ease of access, growing demand for industry-relevant training, and surge in the number of Internet subscribers have propelled the market growth. However, lack of awareness and user engagement, absence of formal recognition and accreditation, shortage of digital infrastructure, and abundance of free content are major hurdles to the industry growth.
Impact of COVID-19 and the way forward:
In the second week of March 2020, the Indian government temporarily closed all educational institutes across the country as a precautionary measure to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus. This had caused complete disruption India’s education system, affecting learners from school-going children to postgraduate students. With no immediate solution to curtail the spread of the virus, the shutting of schools and universities affected the continuity of learning.
To continue education, institutions are focusing on e-learning methods and are shifting towards online classes. Users of e-learning platforms, both free and paid users in the K-12 (K-12 comprises students from classes 1 to 12 and post K-12 segments, rose exponentially, increasing from 45 Mn in 2019 to 90 Mn in April 2020. E-learning players have also witnessed a 50% surge in the time spent on e-learning platforms, which has gone up from 60 minutes in 2019 to 90 minutes in April 2020.