Everyone Prefers TV for Video Streaming & India is Getting There

Most Netflix users preferring to stream videos on the big screen, and with smart TVs India will get there soon.

Tech News
3 min read
Hindi Female

The television is making a grand comeback and mobile phones are not alone in the growing scheme of things of the consumer electronics segment.

No, I am not the one making this sensationalist statement, instead you have Netflix highlighting the pattern in a report published by Recode, this week.

According to Netflix, over 70 percent of users on its platform prefer to stream their favourite shows on the big screen, rather than on mobile phones, like most consumers in India do. But from what we’ve seen since the start of 2018, these changes could make a big impact in the Indian market as well.


Most of what Netflix has pointed out is based on data from developed markets like the United States, Italy and South Africa among others.

Most consumers in these markets rely heavily on the broadcasting might of distributors like Comcast and Sky, and the fact that Netflix has signed up with them, puts it in a position to convert the TV users into streaming users.

Compare that to India, where you already have direct to home (DTH) providers like Tata Sky, Airtel and Dish TV, they work around households that have predominantly been dependent on satellite and free-to-air channels. And latest trends and industry strategy suggest that’s slowly but surely changing for good.

Most Netflix users preferring to stream videos on the big screen, and with smart TVs India will get there soon.
Users across the globe switch to TVs for streaming after initial use on mobile. 
(Photo Courtesy: Recode)

According to a TechSci Research report, one of the major reasons for the increase in the number of smart TV shipments is the increasing spending power of customers, along with the steady rise in demand for entertainment technology.

Brands like Xiaomi, VU and Kodak are pushing the upward growth of digital video streaming, and doing that by offering smart televisions (that support internet) at lower-than-before price points.

Xiaomi does claim the right to kickstart this revolution, and we’re likely to see more brands like VU chip in with their competing products in the coming months. Market insights suggest Indian consumers clearly have found a liking for 32-inch smart TVs, owing to their low cost.


What’s Spurting India’s Smart TV Growth – the Internet

Yep, affordable internet available to households in India has given a big lift to the demand for smart TVs, and that’s an encouraging sign for most.

Experts that The Quint spoke to emphasised that usage of High-definition (HD) and ultra-high definition (UHD or 4K) video content is expected to be 21 percent of the internet video traffic in 2018, as stated in the Deloitte digital media report on rise of on-demand content. High-speed internet is going to be the big catalyst for this growth.

But Netflix isn’t the major player in the Indian video streaming space. The likes of Hotstar and Voot have flourished with the mix of digital and televised content, while Amazon has come down to the country with its smart digital strategy to partner with established film houses, and cater to the youth with fresher content.

Most Netflix users preferring to stream videos on the big screen, and with smart TVs India will get there soon.
Normal TV turns smart with the Amkette Evo TV 2.
(Photo: The Quint/@2shar)

Experts have also opined that this growth has been possible only on the back of favourable government policies and increasing number of DTH users, and it will directly increase the demand for smart TVs in the next five years.

Adding to that, an EY Report from 2017 estimates that the number of total TV households in India is expected to touch 200 million by 2020.

The television market in India is anticipated to cross USD 9 billion by the end of 2021. 

All this is likely to have television brands like Xiaomi salivating over the prospect that awaits them. It’s also a warning to the existing TV giants like Samsung, LG and Sony among others to tweak their strategy for the market.

Otherwise, their fate in the TV market might end in the same fashion as it did in the smartphone segment, where Xiaomi now claims to be the market leader, that too in just three years since its debut.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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