World’s largest direct-broadcast satellite market by the 2012
Indian government decided for open market strategy for cable and satellite television in 1992. Today, 20 years later, India has the most competitive combined cable-satellite direct broadcast market with 7 operators, reaching over 134 million households (out of 223 million) with television sets, of which over 103 million have access to Cable TV or Satellite TV, including 20 million households are direct to home subscribers. In city areas of India, 85% of all households have a TV and over 70% of all households have access to Satellite, Cable or DTH services. Families with TV have been growing at between 8-10%, while growth in Satellite/Cable homes exceeded 15% and DTH subscribers grew 28% over 2009. Real number of households with television access is probably closer to 180 million, since roughly a third of all rural families have some kind of access to television.
India now has more than 500 TV channels covering all the main languages spoken in the nation. India will outreach the USA as the world’s largest direct-broadcast satellite market by 2012.
Hindi television channels are trying to reach outside the country as they see huge benefits in serving the overseas market. For example, Star Plus India is available in 70 countries including North America, the UK, West Asia and Hong Kong. Over the past year, Viacom 18 has entered into the US, the UK and Australia and New Zealand markets, Colors will move into Canada, Singapore, the Caribbean, East Africa and Malaysia, Zee TV reaches 500 million viewers in 167 countries, ZEEL plans to launch more Hindi channels in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa and West Asia and made an agreement with market researcher Nielsen Co. to monitor and measure television ratings and trends in the US, primarily for flagship GEC Zee TV, Star India is looking at further expansion in parts of continental Europe such as the Netherlands, France, Italy and Portugal and entered into an agreement with wireless operator Verizon Communications Inc. to distribute its channel on the Fiber Optic Service TV network for North American audiences. Star Plus will join about 40 other international channels that FiOS TV offers access to.
The United States of America have about 1.7 million people of Indian origin, the United Kingdom has about 1.32 million and Canada has more than 300,000. Overseas plans include sub-titling and dubbing local content in foreign languages for people of Indian origin who may have settled overseas four or five generations ago, because Indians abroad are mostly comfortable with the language of the market they reside in, so the content will be re-purposed.
If you look at the scene worldwide, 75% of the world television market operates on syndicated content. While 90% of that syndication market is captured by Hollywood films and dramas, Korean, French, German, Japanese and other Asian content put together barely reach a 10% share. With more Hindi channels venturing overseas, competition will be tougher, because the number of non-resident Indians and persons of Indian origin is significant and they are also among the most affluent communities in several markets.
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