Let us go 10 years back where the television was the only means of entertainment at home. Watching our favorite shows and movies along with the advertisements was very frustrating. But now the time has changed. Now, the viewers can enjoy their favorite shows and movies ad-free using an OTT streaming service. In this article, I am going to review Top 3 OTT platforms in India.
Introduction to OTT:
OTT stands for ‘over-the-top’, is an online streaming platform where one can stream his/her favorite movies and shows with no ads. At the start, OTT streaming services used to be content hosting platforms. After getting a positive response from the subscribers, they soon started producing their own original shows and movies.
To stream any media available on the OTT platform, you will need only three things.
- Subscription of the respective OTT platform.
- Device (such as smartphone, laptop, television, tablet, etc.) to stream the media.
- Good internet connection.
With these three things, you can watch your favorite movies and TV shows anytime instead of waiting for them to air. Now that you know what an OTT platform is, let us discuss the ‘Top 3 OTT platforms in India’. There are over 40 OTT service providers. Here, we are going to review only the Top 3.
1. Amazon Prime Video
Amazon Prime Video was first started in United Stated in 2006 and launched its services in India in 2016. Along with the United States and India, Amazon Prime Video is also available in UK, Germany, Canada, Australia, etc.
Amazon Prime is the second-highest subscriber holder in India. Even though Disney+ Hotstar tops this list in most-subscribed-to OTT platforms in India, I am putting Amazon Prime Video at the top because it has some additional benefits. Let us discuss them one by one.
Benefits of Amazon Prime Subscription:
- Access to more than thousands of movies and TV shows (including Amazon Originals).
- Since the Amazon prime subscription comes with access to Amazon’s other services, you can get fast and free of cost delivery on the products available at Amazon Store.
- You can also use your subscription to access Prime Music to listen to ad-free songs at no extra charges.
- With the subscription to Amazon Prime, you can also borrow e-Books and comics on Prime Reading.
- Most of the foreign films and shows are not dubbed in Hindi. So, you will have to watch them in original language (using subtitles).
- Local TV shows are not available on Amazon Prime Video.
Languages available in Amazon Prime Video:
Amazon Prime’s content is available in English, Hindi, Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, Punjabi, Marathi, Bengali, and Gujarati.
Subscription plans of Amazon Prime:
Amazon Prime subscription is available on a monthly and yearly basis. The monthly plan costs Rs.129 whereas the yearly plan costs Rs.999.
Best Amazon Original shows available:
- The Boys
- The Family Man
2. Disney+ Hotstar
As mentioned above, Disney+ Hotstar has the highest number of subscribers. Currently, it holds over 300 million active subscribers. It was previously known as Hotstar, but with the launch of Disney+ in the US (in April 2020) the name was changed to Disney+ Hotstar.
Disney+ Hotstar comes with two kinds of subscription plans. One is VIP Plan and another one is Premium Plan.
Benefits of Disney+ Hotstar VIP Plan:
- As Star India owns Disney+ Hotstar, you get access to all Star TV shows before they air on television.
- Stream Hotstar Specials with no extra cost.
- Admittance to stream live sports channels (Star Sports channels only).
- Stream your favorite shows ad-free in HD video quality.
- You get access to Hollywood movies, Disney+ movies, and Kids’ shows, however, it is available only in dubbed language (No English Language).
Benefits of Disney+ Hotstar Premium Plan:
- All benefits that come with Disney+ VIP Plan.
- Stream media ad-free in 4K video quality.
- Access to Disney+ Originals and English shows.
- Stream Hollywood movies and Disney+ movies in English as well as dubbed languages.
- Very few Original shows and movies.
- Most of the shows are not dubbed.
Languages available in Disney+ Hotstar:
Disney+ Hotstar content is available in 8 different languages. English, Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Bengali, Malayalam.
Best movies and shows available on Disney+ Hotstar:
- All movies of Marvel Cinematic Universe
- Star Wars franchise
- The Mandalorian
- Special OPS
- City of Dreams
Disney+ Hotstar subscription Pricing:
The VIP plan of Disney+ Hotstar comes with a single variant that costs Rs.399/year. Whereas, the Disney+ Hotstar Premium plan comes with two variants which are Rs.299/month and Rs.1499/year.
Netflix is well known OTT platform for its original movies and series. It is not only famous in India, but all around the world. Netflix has more than 1000 movies and series and holds over 200 million subscribers.
Netflix was launched in the US in 1997 and started its services in India in 2016. This OTT platform is also available in foreign countries such as UK, Germany, Spain, France, Australia, and more.
Benefits of Netflix subscription:
- Benefits are all the same for every plan, except for video resolution and screen-sharing.
- The subscription to Netflix is very expensive.
- Netflix releases a lot of original shows each month compared to other OTT platforms. As a result, you may not get time to watch every show.
Languages available in Netflix:
Since Netflix is a global OTT platform, its content is available in 26 languages. For example, English, Hindi, Tamil, Japanese, Italian, Spanish, Swedish, Dutch, French, German, and more.
Best Netflix Original Shows:
- Sacred Games
- The Crown
- House of Cards
- Stranger Things
Netflix subscription pricing:
Netflix could have topped this list due to their high-quality original shows, however, the plans are too expensive that everyone can not afford.
Although the Netflix subscription comes with 4 different variants, they differ in terms of video quality, screen-sharing, and devices you can use to watch.
- The Mobile Plan costs Rs.199/month (480p video quality + Single screen at a time)
- The Basic Plan costs Rs.499/month (480p video quality + Single screen at a time)
- The Standard Plan costs Rs.649/month (1080p video quality + 2 screens at a time)
- The Premium Plan costs Rs.799/month (4K video quality + 4 screens at a time)
My personal favorite OTT platform is Amazon Prime Video because you can use your subscription to access ad-free music (on Prime Music), read e-Books (Prime Reading), and get fast and free delivery on shopping.
If you are a fan of Marvel superhero movies and shows, I suggest you go with the Disney+ Hotstar Premium plan. There you can stream your favorite marvel movies, Disney+ original shows, and also Kids shows for your children.
Netflix subscription very expensive and not everyone can afford them. But if you are capable to purchase a Netflix subscription, do purchase it. There you can stream original shows from all over the world. Even if have any problem with the English language, most of their shows are dubbed in Hindi. So, language will not be an issue for you.
Following are some of the frequently asked questions regarding the above 3 OTT platforms in India.
Amazon Prime Video is the best affordable OTT platform in India. Apart from streaming online shows and movies, you can use your Amazon Prime subscription to access Prime Music, Prime Reading. It costs only Rs.999/year.
Well, it depends on what type of content you like to watch. If you watch only Indian content, the VIP plan will be suitable for you. On the other hand, if you want to stream Disney+ Originals, and English shows, you must purchase a Premium plan.
If you are a single user, go with the mobile-only plan instead of the Basic plan because you will be getting 480p video resolution in both plans. 480p video resolution looks fine on the smartphone and tablet.
If you want to stream Netflix on multi-screen, buy the Premium plan. It costs Rs.799/month. With the Premium plan, you can stream Netflix on 4 different devices.
Disney+ Hotstar is the best OTT platform to stream live sports. You can stream IPL, cricket matches, Football/Soccer, Tennis, Kabaddi, etc.
If this review on the Top 3 OTT platforms in India was helpful for you, let me know in the comment section. Your comments will motivate me to write more.