14 November 2019
Netflix's mobile-only plan for India has surpassed its expectations in the previous quarter. The announcement was made by Greg Peters, Chief Product Officer at Netflix, during the third-quarter earnings report. He added that they are very pleased with the way the plan has performed and may even expand it to other markets similar to India.
The mobile-only plan for Netflix was released about four months ago and is priced at only Rs. 199 per month. It offers Standard Definition (SD) content and works with any smartphone or tablet (Android or iOS). The good thing is that it also supports content downloading for offline viewing. Since Netflix had already revealed that the number of users watching Netflix on mobiles is higher than anywhere else in the world, it is not surprising to see the mobile plan doing so well.
In a statement, Peters said:
“I think what we're exploring is, as we are operating in markets that have very, very different conditions, very different levels of affluence and other forms of entertainment competition, et cetera, what is the right structure for us. And so we've been very, very happy with the mobile plan. It's actually performing better than we tested. We'll look at testing that in other markets, too, because we think there are other markets which have similar conditions that make it likely that, that's going to be successful for us there as well.”
It is currently unknown which these "similar markets" are and exactly when they will be receiving the mobile plan. But it is safe to assume that Netflix will begin with beta testing of the feature that will be available for only a few users. If the response is good, it will then release it for everyone. As for the pricing, it will definitely vary from market to market but will surely be cheaper than corresponding standard plans.
The earning report further showed that outside the United States, Netflix added a total of 6.3 million new subscribers to the platform and was able to beat the expectations. But it managed to add only 500,000 new subscribers against the self-predicted 800,000 target in the U.S. It is good to see Netflix recovering from the slight hiccup it faced in the second quarter when it failed to meet the expected U.S. subscribers count for the first time since its debut in 2011.
Netflix is set to face more competition once Disney+ and Apple TV+ streaming services go live in the U.S. in November. Both those services also cost almost half of what Netflix charges but as of now, it has denied accepting pricing as a significant factor in deciding what could be or should be changed about Netflix.