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Netflix’s reduced India pricing still costliest among peers

Netflix Inc. slashed subscription rates in India earlier this month by up to 60% to grab a larger slice of the streaming market where internet penetration is on the rise. Yet, its basic plan remains expensive when compared with the pricing of its peers.

The company’s mobile streaming plan now costs Rs 149 a month, while the entry-level plan is priced at Rs 199—down from the earlier monthly rental of Rs 499. In comparison, Amazon.com Inc.’s Prime Video’s monthly plan now costs Rs 179, up from Rs 129 earlier.

Amazon had hiked its streaming subscription rates on Dec. 14. Its annual plan now costs Rs 1,499—up from Rs 999 previously. The increase, Amazon said on the support page of its website, won’t affect its existing customers. Disney Hotstar offers only annual plans starting at Rs 899. Apple TV+, however, offers the cheapest membership plans, at Rs 99 a month. Its library is dominated by its originals, unlike that of competitors that licence shows and movies.

India, the second-largest digital population in the world with the highest growth rate, is an attractive market for OTT platforms.

The country has the highest consumption of online video as internet consumption has surged after data became cheaper, according to EY’s 2021 media and entertainment report. Subscription revenues will grow at an annualised rate of 25% as paid subscriptions double to over 100 million by 2023, the report said.

Paid OTT subscriptions hit 50 million and are expected to grow even further as platforms now look to cater to the Indian audience with regional language content which is expected to drive demand. Netflix last cut prices in 2019 by as much as half for those committing to at least three months of subscription.

The American subscription streaming service, according to a Bloomberg report that cited Media Partners Asia data, has won an estimated 5 million users in India. That’s lesser than the 46 million viewers who subscribe to the Disney Hotstar platform and 19 million to Amazon Prime Video. Bloomberg Quint

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