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Indian digital music industry to cross Rs 31 bn by FY20: Deloitte

MUMBAI: The Indian digital music industry will achieve a revenue size of over Rs 31 billion by FY20 even as the online music user base touches 273 million.

According to a report titled ‘Digital Media: Rise of On-demand Content’ by Deloitte, the digital video subscription market is estimated to be around Rs 35-40 billion by 2020, excluding advertising.

The report predicts 36 per cent of the ad spends going to the digital space.

The report has been prepared to analyse how the on-demand content eco-system is evolving in India and what the future looks like.

Deloitte India senior director Rajat Banerji said, “Increasing internet and smartphone penetration along with rising spend on entertainment by Indian youth will drive the on-demand digital content industry. Digital media consumption pattern has drastically changed since a decade ago when ringtones were expected to boost the music industry’s revenues. With remarkable improvement in mobile devices technology and internet connectivity, marketers are shifting their business models in tune with the shift of viewer preference towards digital media from traditional media.”

There were an estimated 27 million online music users in India in March 2015. The number of online music listeners is expected to grow to 273 million by March 2020, mostly driven by the youth and also increased demand for regional content. At the same time, the paid subscriber penetration among online music users is expected to reach 10-15 per cent.

Meanwhile, the video industry in India is also seeing the shift towards digital content. Younger demographics are guiding the video consumption.

With improved network speeds, demand for HD and UHD video content is expected to rise along with standard definition video streaming online. Total internet video traffic in India is expected to be 72 per cent of all Indian Internet traffic in 2018, up from 45 per cent in 2013. Like digital music players, digital video players are adopting both subscription and ad monetisation models and offering personalised offerings to maximise adoption.

India’s digital media landscape augurs well for all the stakeholders. Internet traffic originating from mobile devices is already surpassing the desktop internet traffic.

Total internet users crossed 254 million in September 2014, out of which 235 million users accessed internet through mobile devices, states the report.

Moreover, the growth in internet users was seen both in rural and urban parts of India. Internet users in rural India is expected to reach 138 million by June 2015, while 216 million internet users are expected to be in urban India by then.

While the internet user base in India is growing at a rapid rate, 75 per cent of these users belong to the age group of less than 35 years. More than half of the app users in India are between 18 and 24 years, and a further 29 per cent between 25 and 35.

The two activities on which the Indian mobile internet users spend most of their time is social media and entertainment (Music & Video). This is followed by games, general search and emails. Out of the total time spent on digital media by youth, about 21 per cent of the time is spent on audio and video entertainment.

According to the report, on-demand entertainment services led by audio and video content are at the cusp of inflection point in India. A whole ecosystem around such services is coming up, including content providers / aggregators, distribution channels, technology platforms, advertising platforms, payment channels and marketing channels.

“Users have shown willingness to pay for premium services / content and convenience to use that make better value proposition for them. Leading OTT players are monetising this opportunity across audio and video services through multiple monetisation models like subscription and advertisement. Evolving payment mechanisms like OTT mobile wallets will drive on-demand content monetisation,” the report said.