Earlier this week,
video streaming giant Netflix announced its lower-priced mobile-only subscription plan in India, priced at Rs. 199. The new plan marks a significant drop from its original monthly plans that start from Rs. 499, in an attempt to tap into a price-sensitive market as its rivals Amazon Prime and Hotstar have continued to offer plans at lower prices.
While the new plan is considerably cheaper, it is only available to mobile and tablet users and can't be streamed on the TV. Further, the new plan offers only SD streaming.
Here is a comparison of the base plans offered by the three dominant players: NETFLIX Pricing: The monthly mobile-only subscription plan costs Rs. 199 a month. There is no annual service plan, so the yearly cost comes up to Rs. 2,388. The first month is free under the trial period. Services: The plan offers access to all the titles that stream on Netflix, including a number of popular Netflix originals such as Sacred Games and Stranger Things that are not available on other platforms. Netflix has a vast library that hosts a range of Bollywood and Hollywood movies, TV dramas, sitcoms, documentaries and a number of Netflix original titles. Netflix's library is much greater than that of its rivals and its collection of English shows and movies is far superior to both Amazon and Hotstar. Drawbacks: The plan is only available on mobiles and tablets. In addition to the fact that it can't be accessed on TV, the new plan only offers SD streaming instead of HD streaming, contributing towards a lower quality viewing experience. Additionally, you can't stream on more than one screen at the same time. AMAZON PRIME VIDEO Pricing: The monthly plan costs Rs. 129 while a yearly subscription is priced at Rs. 999. The first month is free under the trial period. Services: An Amazon Prime membership gives access to a huge number of titles, including Bollywood and Hollywood movies as well as shows. Additionally, with a Prime membership, you are eligible for ad-free music on Amazon as well as free shipping and fast delivery on many Amazon purchases, including access to Amazon's popular Prime Day deals. Amazon offers 4K Ultra HD streaming without any additional costs. A maximum of three different titles can be streamed on three different devices can be streamed simultaneously. Amazon Prime offers streaming on TV. Drawbacks: While Amazon Prime offers a huge library of titles, including Amazon Prime originals, many believe that Netflix has a wider and better collection of English movies and shows. Additionally, Netflix originals are more popular than Prime originals. HOTSTAR Pricing: The monthly premium plan costs Rs. 299, however, the yearly subscription is priced at Rs. 999 (bringing down the monthly cost to Rs. 83). Services: Hotstar has a good collection of both Hindi and English movies and shows, including access to HBO originals such as Game of Thrones and Chernobyl. In addition, it also includes content from FX, offering you the chance to be up to date with the latest US TV shows. It offers full HD streaming with 1080p resolution. Drawbacks: Hotstar's content is somewhat limited and does not compare to the vast libraries of Netflix and Amazon Prime. Further, Hotstar originals are not that popular with audiences. Hotstar can only be streamed on a single screen at a time. Additionally, the user interface does not contain features such as "Recently Watched" and "Recommended", rendering the viewing experience somewhat tedious as you always have to manually search for the show that you want to watch. Finally, Hotstar does not offer any free trial period.