Fresh after the announcement of Apple‘s new streaming service, Netflix is rolling out a new stripped-down mobile-only subscription in India. The new plan costs INR250 which amounts to roughly $3.63 in American dollars. The regular plan costs INR500 ($7.27), so the mobile-only plan is half that rate. Due to increasingly low data rates, Indians are consuming more and more streaming material on mobile devices.
A Netflix spokesperson reported to Variety:
“We are always looking for ways to make Netflix more enjoyable and accessible. We will be testing different options in select countries, where members can, for example, watch Netflix on their mobile device for a lower price and subscribe in shorter increments of time.”
This is just a test. The spokesperson said that this reduced rate may not be rolled out beyond this market. “Not everyone will see these options, and we may never roll out these specific plans beyond the tests.”
In India, Netflix isn’t the leader when it comes to streaming. That honor belongs to Hotstar, which previously belonged to 21st Century Fox, which means that it now belongs to Disney. That service has just introduced a new tier, which costs INR365 ($5.30) a year. This gives users access to “Hotstar Specials; the Indian Premier League cricket tournament; the cricket World Cup; English Premier League soccer matches; and serials before they are aired on Disney’s Star television network.” Among the features coming to this service are Indian remakes of ‘The Office’, ‘Criminal Justice’, and ‘Hostages’.
Certain streaming services in the US are either not accessible or not easily accessible on TV. Since US audiences already have to watch certain programming on their computers or mobile devices, that could lead to similar mobile-only subscriptions becoming more accepted in the West. Add to that, the constant addition of more and more new subscription services, most of which have at least one “must see” show, US fans might embrace a cheaper way to check these projects out.
Would you be interested in a cheaper version of Netflix if it meant you had to watch it on your phone or tablet?