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Netflix's new $3 plan in India is evidence of tough competition from rivals like Amazon and Hotstar

Jul 24, 2019

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  • Netflix unveiled on Wednesday a new mobile plan in India that will cost INR 199 ($3) per month.
  • The price of the new offering is closer to what local competitor Hotstar and international rival Amazon Prime Video charge in the area.
  • Netflix, while growing year-over-year in India, struggled to keep up with the usage of Hotstar and Amazon Prime Video during the second quarter, data from SimilarWeb that was shared exclusively with Business Insider showed.
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Netflixunveiled on Wednesday a new mobile-only plan in India that will cost INR 199 ($3) per month — a much lower starting point than the INR 499 ($7) its next cheapest plan costs.

The streaming-video service announced earlier in July that it would be introducing the new mobile-only offering, after several months of testing in the region.

The new plan arrives afterNetflix missed its targets for subscriber growth in every region across the world during the second quarter of 2019.

The global streaming company does not break out its performance in specific international markets. But data shared with Business Insider by SimilarWeb, a third-party firm that measures mobile website and app usage, suggested that Netflix was struggling to keep up with the usage of competitors like Hotstar, a local offering that has TV and movies and also streams cricket, an extremely popular sport in India, and Amazon Prime Video.

Netflix daily active users measured by SimilarWeb fell 6% in India from the first quarter to the second, though they grew 88% year-over-year.

Shayanne Gal/Business Insider

Netflix’s new mobile-only offering is closer in price to what Hotstar and Amazon Prime Video charge in India. Amazon Prime membership, which includes Prime Video, currently starts at INR 129 ($2) per month in India, or INR 999 ($14.50) for the year. Hotstar has a free tier of content, and also sells subscriptions for INR 299 ($4) per month, or INR 999 per year.

“We think we need to have a lower price offering to improve the accessibility,” Greg Peters, Netflix’s chief product officer, said on the company’s second-quarter earnings interview. “That’s clearly the motivator behind adding this mobile-tier offering, which we think is going to be a lower price point and in a market where the typical pay-TV package is under $5.”

Read Business Insider’s full story about Netflix usage in India and Brazil:Exclusive data predicted Netflix’s weakness in key markets before its huge subscriber miss, and could hold clues about future growth

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