Netflix to launch gaming services with no additional fee

Ayushi Kar Mumbai | Updated on July 22, 2021

Online gaming is projected to grow in big way in India   -  REUTERS

The move comes even as the firm is losing ground in some of its key markets

Soon you will be able to play games on Netflix. The video streaming company has announced that it will be looking at gaming as a separate category and will be made available to subscribers for no additional charges.

At present, this endeavour is at its early stages. However, the company said it will primarily focus on introducing the gaming platform on mobile devices.

The move comes even as Netflix is losing ground in some of its key markets, including the US. In India too, its content strategy has been questioned by market experts.

On the other hand, online gaming has been big in India and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 21 per cent over FY21-FY25 to reach a size of ₹29,000 crore, according to a study by KPMG in India.

Mobile-first gaming

Analysts believe that Netflix’s foray into the mobile-first gaming space could prove to be particularly rewarding in the mobile handset-friendly Indian market.

Anuj Kapoor, Assistant Professor of Marketing at IIM Ahmedabad, said: “With the smartphone first move, Netflix will be able to penetrate the Tier-2/Tier-3 cities in India which are not Netflix's core user base. Numbers suggest that streaming platform users in these cities prefer vernacular and regional content. Adding gaming to content will add these users to the Netflix platform.” Kapoor also believes that adding a product or feature under the Netflix umbrella will also increase brand awareness for the company.

Netflix already has a mobile-only plan in India at ₹199 a month and the gaming proposition could help it to bring more subscribers.

Jehil Thakkar, Head Media & Entertainment, Deloitte, said, “While India remains mobile-first, the mobile gaming space in India is predominantly based upon free or freemium installations. In case Netflix wants to go for higher rates of installations using this, they will need to take that into consideration. However, since they are also likely to offer this in addition to their 199 mobile-only subscriptions, this might also improve the value proposition of their service and make it more likely for users to subscribe.”

Netflix has not yet announced when it will launch the service in India.

Published on July 21, 2021

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