TV to remain content king, despite growth in mobile apps: Survey

The number of smartphone users in India is expected to almost double by 2022 from 47 cr registered at the end of 2017, a joint study by ASSOCHAM and PwC said.

Fueled by cheap data and the explosion of ‘over the top’ services, the total number of smartphones will hit 86 cr by 2022, which means that nearly every person above 15 years of age will have one.

“With a CAGR of 22.6% during the period of 2017–2022, the Indian video OTT market is poised to outperform the global video OTT market, which is pegged to have a CAGR of 10.1% during the same period,” the industry association said, announcing the study.

“By 2022, the Indian video OTT market will be amongst the top 10 markets globally with a market size of 823 million USD (53,630 million INR),” it added.

Much of the impetus is coming from cheap wireless plans that have made online video accessible for millions of Indians.

“Low data tariffs and increasing smartphone penetration have ensured that consumers and their devices are always connected and on. Mobile devices are becoming the consumer’s preferred choice to consume content,” it said.

Interestingly, at Rs 53,630 cr, the Indian over-the-top services market will still be tiny, compared to the television industry, the report noted.

The Indian television industry was at Rs 8.66 lakh cr at the end of 2017, and will jreach a size of 14.33 lakh cr by the end of 2022.

Against the average growth rate of 23% for on-demand video, TV will grow by 11% on average, per year.

However, it is not clear how the study has chosen to count revenue generated by ‘dual screen’ content — such as TV serials, that generate revenue both for the traditional TV industry as well as for the apps.

At nearly 11%, the growth of TV industry in India will be far far higher than the 1.4% projected for the world as a whole, said the report.

“This proves that India will continue to ride on traditional forms of entertainment despite the disruption in the industry,” it said.

The key reason for TV’s resilience is its ability to reach India’s vast hinterlands at very very low costs through satellite technology.

“Television is one of the most economical forms of content consumption, making it a popular source of entertainment for rural India,” it noted

It noted that India seems to have missed an opportunity as far as tablets are concerned.

“The low penetration is definitely a missed opportunity for players as tablets offer fairly larger screens which are better for consuming HD content as compared to smartphones.

Television is the largest sub-segment within the entertainment and media industry and will continue to remain so in the near future.