India’s over the top (OTT) media services sector is growing rapidly. This includes online video/music streaming services, internet games. As per the PWC report, OTT Video streaming services market will grow at 21.8% CAGR (compounded annual growth rate) and will reach Rs. 11976Cr in 2023.
The market is lucrative and competition is tough
India provides a very lucrative market to OTT service providers as around 34% of the population is young. Recently Netflix introduced its cheapest subscription plan in India. And now e-commerce giant Flipkart also coming up with free video streaming service Flipkart Video for its app users. This will further encourage other players like Amazon Prime, Hotstar, Voot to offer more attractive and cheaper subscription plans.
Then, What’s the problem?
While it is true that these services brought easy access to content and entertainment from all around the world, we need to analyze what might be the hidden costs for us, even if these services are offered free.
Binge-watching ( Watching for a long time multiple episodes of the program) has become a common pass-time in India. This binge-watching habit may lead to increased levels of stress, anxiety, and depression as per the study. And it is also true that being hooked on them leads to greater isolation and less social activity.
Further, present censorship laws of India do not fully cover online streaming platforms, so there is no national-level regulation for these services. Many of these platforms tend to have a westernizing influence, and have a history of putting up controversial content. Access to such shows, videos may contribute to psychological problems and a decline in cultural values among young people.
Given these potential dangers, what to do?
These platforms do bring a great deal of convenience and entertainment. So avoiding them completely is a too extreme step.
That said, it’s good to know that they can be genuinely addictive and eventually even harmful to your personality and emotional life. It’s best to watch your habits and tread carefully!
And be cautious that these cheaper/ free subscription offers, don’t consume your invaluable time.