For over-the-top video subscriptions, Asia is the next big challenge for big global providers, as Asia has been the growth engine for mobile generally, and is the big opportunity for mobile internet access and new Internet of Things apps and services as well.
Netflix’s penetration of subscription OTT video users in Asia-Pacific will increase from 11.8 percent in 2017 to perhaps to 14.3 percent in 2020, says eMarketer.
Local content remains a big challenge in countries where English is not the main language.
Asia is home to one of the most competitive OTT over the top video markets in the world, eMarketer notes, with subscriber growth rates in 2018 of possibly 35.2 percent.
In India, high prices and a lack of localized content on OTT platforms have deterred adoption. Both Netflix and Amazon Prime Video primarily provide content in English and Hindi. In 2018, only 1.7 percent of internet users in India will watch Netflix.
In Japan, Netflix launched in September 2015 and amassed more Japanese titles than U.S. titles on its platform. Yet subscription OTT penetration in Japan has reached only 16.0 percent of internet users, eMarketer notes.
In Western Europe, though Netflix still is growing, it is reaching a point of near saturation, as might be the case in the United States as well.
If nothing else, Netflix has changed strategy for other big content owners and distributors, creating a new imperative to expand globally.