NEW DELHI: Netflix, the US video streaming giant, is aiming to reach more Indian viewers after announcing a strategic partnership with Airtel, Videocon d2h and Vodafone, the country's leading telecom and direct-to-home (DTH) providers.
The agreement involves Airtel integrating the Netflix app into its DTH service across the country, while Videocon d2h will integrate it into its set-top box, allowing millions of its customers to access Netflix through a dedicated button on their remote control.
Meanwhile, Vodafone customers in India will be able to pay for Netflix content via their monthly bills, The Times of India reported.
"India is one of the most important and vibrant countries in the world and we are delighted to be teaming up with three of its leading companies to make it much easier for consumers to enjoy Netflix," said Reed Hastings, Co-founder and CEO of Netflix, at a press conference.
"In the months and years to come, we look forward to bringing our Indian members more compelling stories from all over the world, an ever-improving viewing experience and incredible joy," he added.
The new partnership should help Netflix to overcome a particular problem in India, where there are fewer connected TV sets than in the West. This, coupled with low broadband penetration, has restricted OTT consumption to small screens, The Economic Times reported.
Citing people with "direct knowledge of the development", The Economic Times added that Videocon d2h will price its new set-top box at Rs 2,490 for existing customers and R2 3,490 for new customers.
Commenting on its new partnership with Netflix, Saurabh Dhoot, Executive Chairman of Videocon d2h, said: "We are delighted to have Netflix as a partner on our HD Smart Connect STB. This partnership strengthens our DNA of innovation by providing an instant TV screen experience for Netflix users in a seamless manner."
Data sourced from Times of India, Economic Times; additional content by Warc staff