Amazon.com Inc introduced eight global and local streaming services on its video platform in India on Friday. With this launch, the company aims to increase paid subscriptions in the huge Indian market for its video streaming services.
The decision comes at a time when the firm is facing increased rivalry from both global and domestic rivals in an important industry for the company.
The Amazon Channels service would allow consumers who use Amazon’s core loyalty programme, Prime, to subscribe to numerous streaming services through a single interface, according to Gaurav Gandhi, the head of Amazon Prime Video in India, in an interview ahead of the launch.
“We believe besides solving customer problems… multiple apps, multiple log ins… it also solves a lot for our partners where they are able to get the benefit of Prime Video’s reach and ubiquitous distribution,” said Gandhi.
Channels is debuting with streaming services from partners like as Discovery Inc, Lions Gate Entertainment Corp, and Mubi, according to Gandhi, who added that India is the 12th nation to do so.
Gandhi refused to share the mechanics of revenue sharing with content partners or other financial aspects of the service.
Prime members will still have to pay separately for each streaming service, albeit they are presently being given at a subsidised rate.
In India, for example, the movie streaming app Mubi costs 499 rupees ($6.77) a month, whereas Prime Video requires an annual membership of 1,999 rupees.
“Amazon’s power as an aggregator of content and as a destination improves,” said Uday Sodhi, the former head of Sony Group Corp’s (6758.T) digital business in India.
“This is great for Amazon because they will understand consumer behaviour even better… from the consumption of other apps. And all of this will help them increase their business significantly.”
With 1.3 billion people, India is the world’s second-most populous country and a critical growth market for Amazon and its global competitors Netflix and Walt Disney.
Hotstar, Prime Video’s rival, offers Bollywood movies, TV series, and live streams India’s popular cricket league tournaments, whereas Netflix has placed a large commitment on local original content.
An announced merger of India’s Zee with a local affiliate of Japan’s Sony Group Corp would also establish a TV powerhouse to compete with Prime Video and others in the market. more info
Amazon has made significant investments in purchasing and developing local content in India, and its founder, Jeff Bezos, stated last year that Prime Video was performing well internationally “but nowhere it’s done as well as in India.”
Amazon does not break out user numbers by country.
(Adapted from TimesOfIndia.com)