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Netflix introduces cheaper ads tier plan in 12 countries; India not included


Netflix, the OTT giant, has introduced its ad-supported subscription plan in a dozen of counties. Contrary to Netflix’s previous announcement that it would launch in early 2023, the Basic with Ads tier plan will roll out in stages between November 1 and November 10 in the United States, Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Spain, and the United Kingdom for $ 6.99 whereas in Canada for $5.99.

The ad tier will have an average of 4 to 5 minutes of ads per hour in a video quality up to 720p/HD. However, users won’t be able to down titles, and some movies and TV shows won’t be available due to licensing restrictions. Netflix announced its new move, in an attempt to acquire more users after losing hundreds of thousands of subscribers in Q2 of 2022. It has further predicted to lose around 2 million subscribers. Meanwhile, Netflix’s rival Disney+ is also launching its ad-supported plan at $7.99 per month just a month after, following a price hike of its ad-free program.

Will Netflix’s Ads tier plan come to India

Netflix has yet not introduced its Ads tier plan in India where it has about 4.4 million and 5 million subscribers, according to a report in Forbes. Although the company says it is expecting to roll out the Basic Ads tier plan in more countries over time.

It is noteworthy that Netflix has the cheapest subscription plan in India than anywhere else, considering the price-sensitive nature of the market. In India, the cheapest Netflix plans start from Rs 149 (mobile-only plan), which is around $ 4 less than the newly launched Ads tier plan. But that is a mobile-only plan, for other devices like smart televisions, the plan starts from Rs 199 per month.

India has over 500 Million smartphone users. In 2018, Chief Executive Officer Reed Hastings said that he thought his company could reach 100 million subscribers there. And to capture the untapped market of users, Netflix has taken several steps. The streaming platform has focused on creating localized content including Hindi and South Indian languages (Tamil, Telugu, and Malayalam) films, series, and documentaries, Netflix India Vice President of Content Monika Shergill highlighted in November 2021.

Netflix’s performance in India can also be attributed to the huge competition it faces from other streaming platforms like Amazon Prime Video and Disney + Hotstar that has around 19 million and 45 million subscribers in India respectively. They also tried to cool down the streaming wars, back in December 2021, Netflix dropped the price by around 60% compared to the previous pricing, for the first time since its entry in 2016.

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