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Indians lead in daily mobile video consumption: Penthera study

The number of adult Indians streaming videos on mobile is projected to grow from 257 million in 2019 to 411 million in 2023.

Photo by Kon Karampelas on Unsplash

Indians love watching videos on mobiles. And global video streaming services like Netflix, Disney, and Amazon Prime, among others, love that about Indians since that’s going to make them a lot of money in the coming years.

According to a new study by New York-based video streaming software company Penthera, which surveyed 300 people across the South Asian nation, 70% of respondents stream mobile video content daily, which is quite high compared to Europe, the US, and Latin America, where 45%, 43%, and 65% respondents, respectively, stream video daily on their smartphones. 18% of the Indian respondents said they stream video weekly.

“Compared to people from other parts of the world, people in India have a very high adoption of daily mobile streaming at 70%,” it said.

Citing the research by eMarketer, the study titled ‘India Mobile Streaming Behaviour Survey’, said adult Indians spent 1 hour 12 minutes online per day in 2019, and of which 55 minutes were spent on mobile devices. India is the world’s second-most populous country with over 1.3 billion people.

Source: Penthera’s India Mobile Streaming Behavior Survey

The number of adults viewing content on their mobile devices is projected to grow from 257 million in 2019 to 411 million in 2023, a 60% increase, the report said. In comparison, mobile viewing in the US is projected to also grow, but only by 9%, from 192 million to 210 million.

The data collated during the survey revealed that of the 88% of users in India stream mobile video once a week or more, 93% said they experience streaming frustrations when they watch videos due to connectivity snags.

This is why downloading videos is a popular way to circumvent streaming issues, primarily beyond the bigger Indian cities. As per the report, 43% of the respondents download video daily, while 34% download weekly.

Indians download videos so that they can watch whenever, wherever they want, the report said. About 80% of them expect a streaming service to include a mobile video download feature.

The survey found that downloading is so important to Indian respondents that 84% of them said they would pay a premium for a mobile video download feature. Additionally, 64% of Indian respondents said they would be more likely to subscribe to a video streaming service with a download feature. Further, 33% said they would even be less likely to cancel. Streaming services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hotstar already allow users to download the videos.

Source: Penthera’s India Mobile Streaming Behavior Survey

Age group-wise, those between 30 and 39 years are the most active daily video streamers. Meanwhile, almost three-fourth of Indians said that they watch videos on their mobile apps when they’re on a trip and about 42% said they stream mobile video when they commute such as on the train, subway, or bus.

Since mobile video apps give viewers the ability to watch content anywhere they are, the mobile-first strategy by streaming companies can lure more users for them.

Source: Penthera’s India Mobile Streaming Behavior Survey

“The high demand for mobile streaming video indicates that OTT brands have to incorporate a mobile-first strategy or risk losing out on a valuable customer base,” Penthera experts stated in the report.

Video streaming companies have begun to realize the potential of mobile-first viewers. For instance, Los Gatos, California-headquartered Netflix launched a mobile-only version of its streaming service in India mid last year at about USD 2.80 per month.

“But subscription plans are just one piece of the puzzle in providing a user experience that solves the biggest issues that come with mobile viewership,” the Penthera experts said.

As per research firm Boston Consulting Group, India’s video-on-demand market is projected to jump to USD 5 billion by 2023 from the current USD 500 million.