Walmart-owned e-commerce giant Flipkart has officially forayed into India’s burgeoning OTT video streaming market. The service, which is simply called Flipkart Videos, has been launched in India on Android – and should come to iOS devices soon enough. As expected, the service is largely a content aggregator – and streamer - for now, with vernacular movies and shows from the likes of Voot, TVF, VIU, Arre, and Dice. Flipkart has already confirmed it isn’t looking to produce original content. At least not initially.
With Videos, Flipkart is looking to take on its biggest e-commerce rival in India, aka Amazon, that offers Prime Videos (alongside a host of other benefits) backed by original content. The biggest USP of Flipkart’s Videos streaming service is that it is totally free for users – although it could be ad-supported in the days to come. The interface seems familiar if you already use rival services, with dedicated tabs for movies and shows, further broken down into genres as well should you need more granular control. Flipkart’s service will also allow you to select video quality – and it will also offer personalized recommendations basis of your viewing history.
"Our video content offering is focused on three primary aspects, keeping in mind our understanding of the market: free, curated and personalized. We believe that our customers shouldn't pay extra for premium content and hence, our offering is different from anything else that is currently available," Flipkart’s head of growth and monetization, Prakash Sikaria, was quoted by PTI as saying.
The service is currently available on Android and is being rolled out to devices as part of Flipkart app version 6.17, which means, not everybody would get it at the same time. Make sure to update your Flipkart app for Android though in case you don’t have your settings set to automatic update. Once updated, the service will show up in the app’s hamburger menu – alongside Flipkart Ideas, another new feature that Flipkart is launching simultaneously as a means to offer more personalized recommendations to users for shopping.
It’s still too early to say how things will pan out for Flipkart Videos, but the move surely adds to more competition - in a market that’s ripe with over 300 million mobile broadband users.