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“India to have more than 500 million online video subscribers by 2023”: KPMG report

KPMG in its latest report, ‘Unravelling the digital video consumer’ estimated that India will have more than 500 million online video subscribers by FY 2023. This would make it the second-biggest market in the world after China. The report stated that in India, internet video traffic is projected to reach 13.5 exabytes (EB) per month by 2022, up from 1.5 EB per month in 2017. Videos will account for 77 per cent of all the internet traffic by 2022.

As India witnesses the change in the definition of mass general entertainment, movies and sport are likely to be ‘driver content’ and digital original series would likely be an important tool in defining this transition in culture. “It is a déjà vu of what India saw in the early days of cable television. This universe is going to be divided into ‘the bundled’ and ‘the a-la-carte’ model, with telco/internet service providers (ISP)/network partners, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), broadcasters, movie studios, tech aggregator platforms all playing a key role in the development of this universe of audiences,” states the report.

KPMG’s study states that India will continue to be a challenging market in terms of audience pivots on language, content genres, access and several million consumer cohorts to truly exploit the mid to long tail of online video.

A few of the opportunities to look forward to in this business from an Indian lens according to KPMG would be:

• Quality Indian narratives travelling beyond the South Asian audiences around the world

• The true evolution of the technology stack in order to efficiently deliver content to different audience types, in different languages and genres

• Evolution in the business of ‘Big Data’ resulting in more qualitative viewing sessions and predictive viewer behaviour. An ancillary but significant use case to also affect consumer purchase patterns across products and services

• Collaboration would be an important theme including cross-border and this would have different shapes and forms that we haven’t seen in the traditional media business

• Interactive video gets true meaning as now a viewer doesn’t only ‘watch the video’ but will also be able to ‘feel the video’

.Love for native languages

KPMG found that regional language speakers have a clear affinity for content in their spoken tongue. While Hindi dominates at an overall level, the survey revealed that respondents displayed a strong penchant for content in the native, spoken language. “For example, 90 per cent of the respondents speaking Tamil and Kannada language preferred content in their spoken language. Content preferences across other major language speakers such as Gujarati, Telugu, Bengali, and Marathi were also found to be skewed towards their native language. This points to a large opportunity waiting to be explored for the online video players in terms of content creation and micro-targeting the demand that emanates from across the country,” underlines the report.

Mobile phones – the primary screens?

The proliferation of smartphones and smart feature phones in the country, coupled with affordable data has resulted in mobile phones becoming the dominant medium of online video consumption with wide-spread freedom of access.

KPMG survey highlighted that 87 per cent of the daily time spent consuming online video by the respondents is through mobile phones. The second highest access device was smart television, at 5 per cent of the online time spent, which outlines the affordability-led growth that smart TVs have been able to achieve in the market.

“In fact, the contribution of smart TVs doubles to 10 per cent for metro users, which bodes well for the democratisation of access of online video as well as the potential for consumption of long-form content on the larger screens,” the report states.

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