Tech India

Why Netflix is Struggling in India?

We all know that Netflix is the world’s most popular OTT(Over the top) online media streaming platform. It is growing rapidly in the USA and European countries.

Today, we will discuss why Netflix is struggling to grow only in India.

According to CNBC, Netflix has 169 million subscribers. In which, 61 million subscribers are from the United States and 78.6 million subscribers are from the other various countries.

Another key thing is the company has allocated $17 billion for 2020 on content. This budget is bigger than many movies and the entertainment industry.

Netflix is able to expand its business to 190 countries in the world and growing rapidly. But, there is only one country Netflix is facing too many difficulties to grow.

Amazon Prime and Netflix both have not been able to capture enough market than expected.

5 Reasons Why Netflix is Struggling in India:

1. Hotstar:

The most popular online media streaming platform in India is Hotstar.

Hotstar was launched in February 2015. And Netflix was launched in January 2016. So within one year, Hotstar had started capturing the targeted audience.

Hotstar provides free access to most of the shows which are telecast in Star Network TV channels. That is the biggest reason why people love Hotstar.

India is a country where most people love to watch cricket. Star India holds the contract to show the world’s biggest cricket league ‘Indian Premier League'(IPL). Hotstar provides free to watch feature with 5 to 10 minutes delay in streaming.

Also, it also streams many international tournaments of different sports.

That’s why Hotstar holds about 70% of the market share in on-demand local streaming services.

2. Pricing:

Netflix is charging almost 2 times than other big players in India.

Hotstar offers $3/month for premium shows. Besides, it offers 80% of the content without taking any charge.

Amazon prime offers $1.90/month. In which, they also provide Amazon prime music.

On the other side, the cheapest plan for Netflix starts at $7.30/month. Pricing is the key factor for not being able to grow in the world’s fastest-growing economy.

3. Piracy:

Unfortunately, Netflix is not able to protect the piracy of the content they produce.

Most of the web series of Netflix are freely available on the internet. Well, the Indian market is price sensitive. If the content is freely available(however it is illegal) then why to pay for it. This is the common mentality of Indian youth.

Also read: 14 Amazing Things to Know About Netflix

4. Less Regional Content:

Netflix should need to focus on the regional content just after a few months of launching.

But, the company delayed taking action for almost 1 year to create regional content. Till now, there is less regional content on Netflix.

Mostly in India, people prefer to watch web shows and series in the Hindi language rather than English.

There are many languages being spoken in India. That’s why Netflix is facing difficulties to understand how they should work on regional content.

5. Marketing Strategy:

Before entering the Indian market, Netflix was already a billion-dollar company.

They could have spent millions of dollars on the advertisement on all the channels of marketing. It could be traditional ads or digital ads. But, the company spent comparatively less money than most other American companies.

Netflix got less word of mouth marketing just because of this thing.

Disney has made a huge move towards OTT platforms.

Recently, Disney has confirmed that the company is going to launch its OTT platform that will be cheaper than Netflix.

By the end of 2019, Disney will make a big move.

Let’s see what happens in the OTT market.

Netflix has been spending billions of dollars every year for content production. On the hand, they are not able to capture that much market in India.

Before the end of 2019, Netflix launched a new affordable plan for Rs199 per month nearly $2.6. By doing this Netflix has gained so many new consumers.

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Thank You 

Anuj Vohra

Hi , I am Anuj Vohra. I write articles about technology, economics, and business case studies at

View Comments

  • I don't think so Netflix is suitable for India. India have all family audience. it is more suitable to all bachelor and working professional who travel a lot for their business or work. It is not meant to cater Indian Audience.
    I still don't know why they are marketing Netflix so big in India. Indian audience will not going to discard their TV and DishTV connection just because some new player like OTT platform (fancy name) Amazon Prime, Netflix will come to market

    • India is a young country where the average age is 27 years!

      That is why Netflix is playing long term game and focusing on acquiring more market share in the OTT - Over the Top (online media industry).

      Hotstar, Netflix & Amazon Prime Videos will always remain key players and in order to remain key players, they have to spend more money on marketing and content development.

      Thank you for commenting & I really appreciate your opinion.

  • OTT video subscribers have exponentially increased in the recent years, and so has the revenue surrounding the platform. It is definite that 2020 will be the year where the OTT platform providers will emerge as the game changers for OTT based services. This also highlights that whosoever would be keeping a keen check on the top OTT trends, would be leading the market.

    • Right now in 2020, when I am replying to your comment, OTT platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime Videos, Hotstar and so on have got mindblowing growth. Due to covid-19 outbreak, people are stuck in homes and they have started consuming OTT platforms. So, the scenario has changed due to lockdown. Thank you for commenting.

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Anuj Vohra

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