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Indian online entertainment market poised to reach $5B by 2023; Bollywood, cricket, music dominate

Sohini Mitter
posted on 21st November 2018
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Increasing internet penetration in rural India and a wide variety of regional content on offer is driving OTT consumption, a BCG study found.

Over the top (OTT) content platforms, or entertainment services delivered over the internet, are serious business now. On Tuesday, the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) released a new study that estimates India’s OTT market to reach $5 billion by 2023 from its current $0.5 billion.

This spurt in OTT consumption is being driven by increasing internet penetration in rural areas, rising adoption of OTT content among women and the older population, and the growing affluence of people as they are willing to pay for content services more than ever before.

“OTT is riding the wave of increased data consumption and internet access in rural India, has opened a new distribution channel that is viable for regional and niche content,” the report stated.

online entertainment
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Add to that the availability of budget smartphones, and the wide array of content (across genres and languages) on offer, entertainment viewing in India is finally shifting from traditional television to the more personalised second screen.

Kanchan Samtani, Partner & Director, The Boston Consulting Group, said:

Majority of India has a single TV per household. Affordable data has created an alternate medium where consumers, for the first time, can tap into content basis individual preference at a time and space convenient for them.”

The report titled Entertainment Goes Online further observes “there is a room for many types of OTT models” such as SVOD (subscription-based platforms), AVOD (advertising-based platforms) and TVOD (transaction-based platforms) to exist and succeed in the domestic market.

Kanchan added,

“Whilst the current market operates with a largely advertising paid content paradigm, consumers are not averse to paying for convenient content access that OTT unlocks.”

Indian content including Bollywood, cricket and music are most consumed. These genres have a large following in the Indian diaspora too. “With their large content libraries, Indian OTT players are sitting on a metaphorical gold mine to serve this increasingly important customer base,” said Gaurav Jindal, Principal at BCG.

BCG further outlined the three types of entertainment consumers in India.

  1. The Early Adopters whose primary entertainment consumption occurs on OTT platforms. While it is largely an urban phenomenon still, BCG expects it to be “more equally distributed” going forward.
  2. The  OTT Experimenter, who balances both conventional and new-age entertainment platforms.
  3. The Traditionalists, who mainly consume television and are yet to be bitten by the OTT bug.

The survey found that over 30 OTT apps are currently jostling for eyeballs, but nearly 80 percent of consumers end up using not more than three at any given time. “While Indian OTT players have taken many steps to capture the market, there is a lot that needs to be done before Indian OTT market achieves the same penetration and maturity as its western counterparts,” BCG stated.

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