Giving further evidence of how cheap data connection and smartphone penetration has helped online video content broadcasters such as YouTube get a strong foot-hold in smaller cities in India, YouTube India, last Thursday said 60% of its users come from non-metro cities, and over 95% of its content consumption happen in vernacular languages.
It claimed to have a traffic of over 265 million users per month.
Satya Raghavan, YouTube India’s director for content partnerships, said, “We are witnessing a staggering growth in content consumption in Indian languages. More than 1,200 creators in the country have crossed the million-subscriber threshold. Just five years ago, there were only two creators with one million subscribers.”
According to him, in 2014 there were 16 Indian YouTube channels that had a million subscribers each. That number has currently galloped to 1,200 video creators in the country each having crossed the one million-subscriber mark. Incidentally, five years ago there were just two video creators with one million subscribers each.
About 75% of the mobile internet traffic in India constitutes of online videos, and the most popular type of video content on YouTube India fall in the categories such as dance, music, comedy, education, food, tech, entertainment, and learning, YouTube India said in a press statement.
With nearly 460 million internet users in the country, regional language viewers stand at about 230 million. Growth of video viewership in regional languages like Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Bengali, and Hindi is clocking a 100% year-on-year rise.
According to Raghavan, “More than 35 Bengali channels have now crossed the one million subscriber mark, and over 65 channels in the language have subscribers between 500,000 to one million and about 500 Bengali channels have more than 100,000 subscribers.”
YouTube recently started premium services in India, where it is offering streaming of advertisement free content for music, and ‘YouTube Originals’–similar to original content created by Netflix and Amazon Prime.
YouTube Originals has launched India specific content such as ‘ARRived’, ‘Straight Up Punjab’, ‘Off The Page’, among many others. It plans to create original content in local lamguage as well to further capture the local market share. The platform also supports movie rentals and purchase plans.