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The Indian entertainment scene is witnessing a seismic change with 30 over-the-top (OTT) platforms vying for space as players look to differentiate themselves, says a new report, adding that players like Netflix and Amazon Prime now need to create more desi content to bring more users to their platforms.
Massive capital commitments have been made by platforms for building libraries of diverse original content over the last couple of years for the Indian audience.
According to the KPMG report titled “India’s Digital Future: Mass of niches”, OTT services attract a more individualistic audience compared to the family viewers in a country dominated by single TV households.
“Hence, the content on these platforms needs to appeal to different consumer sensibilities and have an element of freshness. While OTT players can attract their chosen target audience for sampling content with a few originals that appeal to them, depth in such digital-native original content becomes vital to ensure consumer stickiness in the long run,” the findings showed.
Indian language internet users are expected to grow to 536 million by 2021 from 234 million in 2016.
As nine out of 10 new Internet users in India are likely to be Indian language users, it is vital for OTT players to cater to this audience in their native language.
The OTT platforms have started to focus on building a library of regional content that includes movies and originals over the past 12-18 months.
Most of the video-on-demand (VOD) platforms have content offerings in regional languages. But such content has been restricted to select movies along with a handful of original shows, if any.
“However, dubbing has emerged as an effective tool for players to quickly expand the breadth of original and movie content available across multiple regional languages like Tamil, Telugu, Bengali, Kannada, Malayalam, and Marathi,” the report noted.
For example, Prime Video has dubbed popular Hindi originals like “Inside Edge” and “Breathe” to Tamil and Telugu.
In addition to originals, Prime Video has also tried to increase depth in their regional library by dubbing English movies like “Alpa”, “Rampage”, etc. to Tamil and Telugu.
Similarly, Hotstar has used dubbing to launch the Hindi web-series “Criminal Justice” in six regional languages – Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Bangla, Malayalam and Marathi.
“OTT players like Netflix and Amazon prime have started hiring writers to add contextual flavour to dialogues in English in addition to launching regional web series,” said the report.
Much of the video viewing in India is happening in a local language and YouTube, which has 265 million unique, active users has reported that over 95 per cent of its users watched videos in a regional language.
Many OTT players are also investing in building their regional content libraries to match the demand from these audiences, the report mentioned.
Telco partnerships have also emerged as an important source of subscription/syndication revenue for the OTT platforms, with a significant 30-35 per cent contribution to the overall subscription revenues in FY19.
Platforms like ALT Balaji, Eros Now etc. are examples of players who have substantial revenue contribution coming from telco distribution.
Some players have also forged partnership among themselves to mutually benefit each other and also with social media platforms (such as Facebook) to broadcast their content. For example, ‘Arre’ has partnered with ‘Sony Liv’, ‘Yupp TV’ and ‘Facebook’ for content.
“While majority of the players have started to offer shorter duration packs (weekly and monthly), some players are also bundling regional / international content separately to cater to different viewer segments.
In order to cater to a wider user base in India, some players are also experimenting with cash payments, thew report noted.
Long-form content has grown with players like Netflix, Prime Video, Zee5 and Alt Balaji focusing on creating originals with episodes ranging from 20 to 60 minutes.
Short form content is highly popular on social media platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Snapchat, etc.
“Short form is also receiving due attention from OTT platforms like Eros Now and Hoichoi who are building their short form content libraries with short stories, comedies, interviews, etc,” said the KPMG report.
On the other hand, OTT players have been reducing the cost of their subscription through introduction of basic, affordable packs.
For example, Hotstar launched its low-cost subscription pack in the form of ‘Hotstar VIP’, whereas Netflix introduced ‘mobile only’ plans which are 50 per cent cheaper than its basic plan.
These cost-reduction initiatives by the OTT players has resulted in some parity being achieved when it comes to TV pack vs. OTT pricing. (IANS)
Bollywood actor Abhishek Bachchan shares how he feels when people compare him with his father Amitabh Bachchan on the singing reality show 'Sa Re Ga Ma Pa'. He also requests contestant Rajshree Bag to sing a track 'Bahon Mein Chale Aao' featuring his mother Jaya Bachchan.
Abhishek said after looking at the performance of Rajshree, who is often compared with Lata Mangeshkar on the show, that she reminds him of being compared with his father. "Rajshree, whenever I have got the chance to watch the show, I've seen people compare you to Lata didi. It actually reminded me about how people compare me with my father and ask me how I feel about it."
According to him Amitabh Bachchan is a great actor in the industry and this is what he says to everyone making these comparisons. "My answer to them is that there's no greater actor in this film industry than Amitabh Bachchan and if I'm being compared to him, I am sure I must have done something good."
"Similarly, your voice has a different kind of magic like Lata ji and that's why people are comparing your voice with her. I feel you should always take this as a compliment," he concluded. 'Sa Re Ga Ma Pa' airs on Saturday and Sunday on Zee TV. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: Abhishek Bachchan, Amitabh Bachchan, reality show, Sa Re Ga Ma Pa, Rajshree Bag
Winters in India have always beckoned for that hot, steaming bowl of tomato and pepper rasam or the mellow, millet based Raab. Certain dishes like sarson ka saag, undhiyu, nimona pulao are winter specialites in the country. Seasonal food has always been an Indian speciality -- we switch our choice in fruits, vegetables, sometimes even grains with the onset of different season. The preference of using specific ingredients during certain climates is visible in our sweets as well. It's common to find local and traditional delicacies made of jaggery, instead of sugar during the winters. Case in point -- the Nolen Gur Rasgulla, a speciality made in Odisha and West Bengal between November to February.
Celebrity chef, Sanjeev Kapoor, strongly advocates this need of eating seasonal produce. He says, "The beauty of our food is in our seasonal usage of fruits and vegetables. If you realise, Gajar ka halwa is made aplenty during winters as this is the season when beautiful red carrots hit the market or mango pickle is made during summer, thanks to its availability. Despite people and sometimes, even me, suggesting that we should eat fresh as well as seasonal fruits and vegetables, we do not know what chemicals are sprayed on them to keep them safe while they are growing. When this produce hits the market, there isn't a certifying agency like the FSSAI that will help people understand what vegetables and fruits are free of pesticides and germs and which ones don't. Hence, the onus lies on us to make them safe for consumption. ITC's Nimwash is a good solution."
When it comes to winters, the Chef recommends eating these fruit and vegetables:
* Purple Mogri -- Mogri or Radish pods are not a common sight throughout the country. But you can spot them during the winters in local markets in northern India where women pick them up to make raitas, curries and stir fries. Rich in magnesium, calcium and copper, the vegetable is known to aid people from digestive problems.
Mogri or Radish pods are not a common sight throughout the country, but you can spot them during the winters | Pixabay
* Sweet Potato -- A re-discovered favourite, Sweet potatoes have created a space for itself in the millennial kitchen. With its diverse addition in burgers, chips and even chat, the root vegetable is filled with nutrients such as fibres and vitamins.
Sweet potatoes have created a space for itself in the millennial kitchen. | Wikimedia Commons
* Avarekalu -- Called Hyacinth beans in English, Avarekalu is a winter speciality in the south that is added to sambhar, saagu, rotis, etc. Bangalore is famed for its Averakalu mela during the winter months, where you can find these beans in dosas, Pani puri and even Jalebis! Thronged by crowds from all over the city, the food fest is a gourmand's delight.
Called Hyacinth beans in English, Avarekalu is a winter speciality in the south that is added to sambhar, saagu, rotis, etc. | Wikimedia Commons
* Amla -- The Indian gooseberry is a common winter fruit found through the country. High in Vitamin C, it is known to be immunity building and extremely beneficial for the skin and hair. There are multiple ways to eat Amla -- it is pickled, made into a fruit preserve called as Murraba or even eaten by sprinkling salt over it.
The Indian gooseberry is a common winter fruit found through the country. | Pixabay
(Article originally published on IANSlife) (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: winter, Sanjeev Kapoor, chef, Indian gooseberry, Sweet Potato, Radish pods
Just three minutes of exposure to deep red light once a week, when delivered in the morning, can significantly improve declining eyesight, finds a new study. The study, published in the journal Scientific Reports, found there was, on average, a 17 per cent improvement in participants' colour contrast vision when exposed to three minutes of 670 nanometre (long wavelength) deep red light in the morning and the effects of this single exposure lasted for at least a week.
However, when the same test was conducted in the afternoon, no improvement was seen. "We demonstrate that one single exposure to long wave deep red light in the morning can significantly improve declining vision, which is a major health and wellbeing issue, affecting millions of people globally," said lead author, Glen Jeffery from the University College London.
Using a provided LED device, all participants were exposed to three minutes of 670nm deep red light in the morning between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m | Photo by Hush Naidoo Jade Photography on Unsplash
For the study, the team involved a small yet significant number of participants aged between 34 and 70, had no ocular disease, completed a questionnaire regarding eye health prior to testing, and had normal colour vision (cone function). This was assessed using a 'Chroma Test' -- identifying coloured letters that had very low contrast and appeared increasingly blurred, a process called colour contrast.
Using a provided LED device, all participants were exposed to three minutes of 670nm deep red light in the morning between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. Their colour vision was then tested again three hours post exposure and 10 of the participants were also tested one week post exposure. On average there was a 'significant' 17 per cent improvement in colour vision, which lasted a week in tested participants; in some older participants, there was a 20 per cent improvement, also lasting a week.
A few months on from the first test (ensuring any positive effects of the deep red light had been 'washed out') few participants, carried out the same test in the afternoon, between 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. When participants then had their colour vision tested again, it showed zero improvement. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: Deep red light, therapy, eye sight, study,chroma test