The media and entertainment industry in India is growing rapidly, and the country is expected to join the global top-10 shortly. Segmented into television, print media, digital media, films, animation & VFX, out-of-home, gaming and radio and music, the overall media and entertainment sector is expected to be valued at INR 3,224.24 Bn by FY 2025 expanding at a CAGR of ~10% during the FY 2020-FY 2025 period.
The television segment accounted for the largest share of the market both in FY 2018 and FY 2019. However, the digital media segment which includes over-the-top (OTT) services is on the cusp of disruption and is likely to overtake the print and films segments by FY 2025 in terms of market revenue
Despite the OTT market being at a nascent stage, its services have found widespread acceptance in the country. OTT content can be downloaded directly and viewed by users, on demand, via the internet on any connected devices like smart TVs, PCs, tablets, smartphones and gaming consoles. All OTT services are not free of cost and require users to subscribe to a particular OTT platform by paying monthly or yearly subscription fees.
The Indian OTT market ecosystem comprises players operating in various industry segments like television distributors (Den Network, Videocon D2H, Tata Sky and others), telecom companies (Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel Ltd. and Vodafone Idea), companies with content presence (Saregama, TVF Play, FilterCopy, Eros Now, ALTBalaji and others), broadcasters (Disney+hotstar, Zee5, Sun NXT and others), independent companies and platforms (Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, MX Player and others)
The Indian video OTT market was valued at INR 42.5 Bn in FY 2019 and is expected to reach INR 237.86 Bn by FY 2025, expanding at a CAGR of ~33.10% during the forecast period. Premium, original content is one of the biggest growth drivers and differentiators in the OTT industry with a number of OTT platforms competing for consumers’ attention. Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, MX Player, JioTV, Voot, SonyLIV and ALTBalaji are some of the major video OTT platforms in the market. In 2019, there were around 170 Mn video OTT-streaming users in India and the user base is expected to increase at a rate of about 26.40% till 2025. Industry players are heavily investing in acquiring or developing new content and services, and are also focusing on improving customers’ experiences.
The Indian audio OTT market was valued at INR 8.33 Bn in FY 2019 and is expected to reach INR 31.99 Bn by FY 2025, expanding at a CAGR of ~23.44% during the forecast period, backed by the swift transition from feature phones to smartphones, an increasing smartphone user base (around 830 Mn by the end of 2022) and cheap internet data rates.
Gaana, JioSaavn, Apple Music, Amazon Prime Music, Wynk Music, Google Play and Hungama Music are some of the major platforms present in the Indian audio OTT market. Streaming of music in regional languages like Punjabi, Tamil, Kannada, Bhojpuri, Telugu and Malayalam witnessed a significant surge in 2019. Consequently, the time spent on streaming has also gone up in the eastern states of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, and in the south western states like Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.
Market segment insights:
In 2019, Disney+hotstar with global streaming and concurrent viewership records, accounted for the highest market share (~23.80%) as India’s leading digital-streaming platform based on app installation, along with highest app reach, followed by MX Player (~41.40%), and Jio TV (34.08%). Based on the different types of revenue models adopted by market players, the market is segmented into advertising video on demand (AVOD), subscription video on demand (SVOD), freemium and transactional video on demand (TVOD). The AVOD/advertising revenue model accounted for the major chunk (~69.23%) of the total market revenue generated by video OTT players in FY 2019, and it is expected to continue as the leading revenue-generating segment till FY 2025. Original content in regional languages would become the major game changer for video OTT players since it is expected to bring in viewers willing to pay subscription prices.
As of April 2020, Gaana with monthly average users (MAU) of 152 Mn leads the OTT audio market in India with a market share of 32%. Global OTT audio leader, Spotify, which entered the Indian market in January 2019, currently has more than 2 Mn users in India and accounts for 15% market share. While the core markets of Spotify are Mumbai and Delhi, Gaana has a strong presence in Bengaluru and Ahmedabad, besides the other two metros cities.
Based on the different types of revenue models adopted by players, the market is segmented into advertising supported model, bundled pricing model and paid model.
Impact of COVID-19 on the Indian OTT Market
Amid the nationwide lockdown due to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, OTT platforms in the country have witnessed a substantial surge in terms of content consumption and subscriber count, and hence are striving to meet viewers’ swelling appetite for entertainment. The average time spent by a subscriber on an OTT platform has increased from about 20 minutes to at least one hour during recent times. It is estimated that an user spent at least 32% more time watching original series on various OTT platforms during the March 20th 2020-April 3rd 2020 period as compared with the January 13th 2020-February 2nd 2020 period.
To meet the increasing demand and reduce internet congestion, OTT platforms including Hotstar, SonyLIV, ALTBalaji, Amazon Prime Video, Netflix and Zee5 have unanimously decided to cut down high definition picture quality (1080p & 720p) bitrate to standard definition picture quality (480p).
Impact of COVID-19 on market players:
• In April 2020, Indian OTT platform Zee5 reported that overall it witnessed a viewership of 437.4 Mn during the lockdown period, starting from March 2020 till April 2020
• On 21st April 2020, ALTBalaji reported that the OTT platform is currently witnessing a considerable rise in digital subscriptions with an average of 17,000 subscriptions being added per day post the announcement of lockdown in the country, as against an average of 10,600 in March 2020 before the lockdown, which corresponds to a dramatic growth of roughly 60%
• As of April 16th 2020, DAU of Amazon Prime Video in India increased by 83% since the country went under lockdown
• On March 20th 2020, MX Player reported to have witnessed a two-times increase in the time spent across content in various genres by Indian users, especially across MX Originals
Key Strategic Initiatives by OTT Players
• Major SVOD players are introducing pack durations and sachet pricing as part of their strategic initiatives to boost subscription rates. Sachet packs ensure that consumers get access to what they are searching for at a reasonable cost and also facilitate acceptance among price-sensitive Indian consumers
• SVOD platforms across the industry are also emphasizing on creating a repository of regional content, which includes movies and web series as a strategic move to target niche regional audience across the country. Traditional broadcasters like ZEE5, Voot and Disney+hotstar, as well as independent streaming platforms like ALTBalaji and Eros Now, are currently investing heavily in creating original regional content
• In order to create engaging experiences for viewers, OTT players are experimenting with various forms of in-app interactive activities like contests or games that can be played parallelly while watching live video content. Disney+hotstar established the watch ‘n play initiative during the 2019 season of IPL, where a viewer could predict scores and win prizes during a live match.
• Amazon Prime Video
• Eros Now
• MX Player
• Netflix India