With the launch of Prime Video Channels that will make eight other subscription-driven video-on-demand platforms available, Amazon Prime Video has become a content aggregator in India. Users with add-on subscriptions will be able to access streaming services such as Discovery+, Lionsgate Play, Docubay, Eros Now, MUBI, Hoichoi, Shorts TV and Manorama Max for the services they choose. This means that there will be a single bill.
Gaurav Gandhi, country manager, Amazon Prime Video, India, said the platform’s journey in India over the past 4.5 years has taught the company that customers are hungry for content. “While we are serving our own range of exclusive originals and movies, they may be demanding programming that goes beyond those. Acting as a marketplace for entertainment is the next step for us.”
In regards to competition, Gandhi said Amazon Prime Video does not see the move as enabling easy access to competitors because these are early days in the streaming world. “While the OTT partners get Amazon’s reach and distribution, the US company also takes care of all the back-end and technical responsibilities.”
Chaitanya Divan, head, Prime Video Channels, Amazon Prime Video, said with the eight partners on board, the Amazon platform will be home to over 10,000 titles. Divan said six of the eight Indian platforms that have partnered with Amazon have come on board for a multi-territory deal and will also be available in other markets as part of Prime Video Channels. “The focus is on delivering high selection and convenience.” Divan pointed out that often customers have to jump from one app to the other to watch specific titles.
“Managing several apps leads to issues such as having to re-enter account details, the app not working on a second device or users forgetting their passwords. With Prime Video Channels, all premium content subscriptions will be managed within a single destination, and customers will no longer have to juggle between multiple usernames, passwords and billing due dates,” Divan explained. Moreover, customers will save on data and time spent deciding what to watch.
According to FICCI-EY media and entertainment report 2021, India is home to over 60 OTT platforms. Video subscription revenue grew 50% in 2020 as premium content, originals and sports, went behind paywalls – particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic.