NetFlix has been the undisputed leader when it comes to streaming services, and it was in fact NetFlix that gave rise to the word Binge watching. It was NetFlix that made several DVD rentals shut shop as it provided for a well curated content at a single place.
Reed Hastings, the Netflix co-founder and CEO explained in his keynote how the number of hours watched on Netflix has gone up from 12 billion hours in Q4 up from 8.25 billion a year ago. The service boasted of Adaptive Streaming and a decentralized network covering 190 countries with 125 million hours of content being delivered each day. Netflix has added a whopping 130 new countries as announced in the keynote today and here is the list of all the countries where Netflix is available. Virtually, every country in the world is now covered except for China, North Korea, Syria and Crimea.
We at India however were deprived of Netflix until today when the streaming giant announced that it will be starting the service in India. The subscriptions start at Rs 500 and go all the way up to Rs 850 per month. As an introductory offer, Netflix will be offering the first month free of charge and will start charging for the subsequent months.
Until now, if one had to access Netflix in India, they had to use VPN services else usually folks would download pirated content. The very fact that piracy has been reduced considerably after Netflix had been launched in some of the countries comes as a relief to the entertainment industry who would otherwise be suffering huge losses.
The Basic plan entitles comes without the HD feature, Ultra HD and will allow you to view on only one screen at a time and this costs Rs 500 ($7.81), which is a bit steep indeed. The middle level plan will allow for viewing on two simultaneous screens and will serve HD content, this plan costs Rs 650($10). The top of the line premium plan will allow four displays and also serve HD and Ultra HD content, this costs Rs 800($12.5).
Caveat comes in the form of a limited shows offered, and many users have already taken it to twitter and are complaining about the missing shows from the US Netflix. Lastly, Netflix is including some Indian movies and TV Shows, but the catalog is pretty barebones for now.
Streaming as a service is still something that hasn’t really caught up in India, blame it on the crippled Internet speeds or the lack of comprehensive streaming services. Services like Ogle, Hooq and Hotstar are still struggling to make a name for themselves. At this juncture, Netflix is assigned with the uphill task of getting people to use Internet to watch shows but the limitations like the higher subscription price might slow them down considerably.