Walmart challenges Amazon in India with video streaming service

U.S.-based companies like Amazon Prime Video and Netflix have been targeting the video streaming market in India. Walmart could be the latest to join the fray.

According to Bloomberg, Walmart’s Indian e-commerce company Flipkart will soon add a free streaming video service for some members on its platform. Flipkart Plus loyalty members can expect the video service to arrive in September. The report said that Flipkart’s video service will consist of licensed content at first – from partners including Disney – but could add original content later.

The move will place Flipkart in a better position to compete with Amazon in India, which offers its video streaming service to Prime members who pay 129 rupees per month (or 999 rupees per year). According to the report, Flipkart will offer its video service for free to customers who accumulate enough loyalty points.

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While both Prime Video and Flipkart’s upcoming services are geared toward keeping customers on their respective e-commerce platforms, they are both part of a growing streaming video market in the country. A PwC report from earlier this year predicted that India’s streaming video market will expand at a compound annual growth rate of 22%.

Netflix recently introduced lower-cost, mobile-only streaming plans in India to help its streaming video service better compete in the market. Netflix’s modified plans and pricing in India come along as companies struggle to compete with Hotstar, an SVOD service run by Star India, which was wholly owned by 21st Century Fox, but passed to Disney as part of the company’s $71 billion acquisition of certain Fox assets. According to research from Jana released last summer, Hotstar holds 69.7% of the market in India, while Amazon holds 5% and Netflix holds just 1.4%.