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Amazon Prime Video vs Netflix vs Hotstar: From price to content, which is the best video streaming site in India

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Wed July 12 2017, 12:07 pm
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    India is currently witnessing a surge in content consumption on smartphones and PCs via over-the-top (OTT) platforms such as Amazon Prime video, Hotstar, and Netflix. In 2015, Star India launched Hotstar amidst multi-million dollar marketing and a promotion blitzkrieg. This attracted the attention of international and national players in the arena, with Netflix joining to switch on its service in India in January 2016, followed by Amazon's Prime Video finally launching its services in December last year. With all the three portals producing the maximum number of content Indians arguably get the most choices when it comes to online consumption. Here is a comparison between Amazon Prime Video vs Netflix vs Hotstar, in terms of price, content and more.

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    Price: Netflix is the biggest among the three. It has 3 tiers of subscription, each with a different feature list. Netflix has plans starting at Rs. 500 (Basic) and has other rates for Standard (RS 650) and Premium (Rs 800) subscriptions. The first month is free for all users as of now. (Image: Website)

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    Price: Amazon Prime comes the cheapest at Rs 499 for a year, which works out to about Rs 42/month. (Image: Website)

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    Price: Hotstar comes with a Rs 199 per month subscription. A nominal amount of the content it offers. It also has a free option available. (Image: Website)

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    Interface: Netflix's app is the best built, the most intuitive, and contains the most user-friendly features. At the top of the screen you have the current episodes, below that your bookmarked shows, and below that suggestions based on your watch history. (Reuters)

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    Interface: Amazon Prime Video offers a seamless experience, but there are some issues with the episode last played. However, from changing the subtitle size to streaming quality to estimate how much data the video will take on an hourly basis, is very handy for users. (Image: Website)

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    Interface: Hotstar's app is occasionally buggy. It gets stuck on the loading screen and by far has the highest loading time of the 3. Same issues keep cropping up on the web portal. But overall, it is a decent experience. (Image: Website)

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    Content: In the content category almost all Netflix Originals are available to users in India. It has upped the game recently, releasing a number of Netflix originals such as House of Cards, Daredevil, Stranger Things, Orange is the New Black, The Crown, Luke Cage and Narcos, which made a mark in India. However, its local Indian content is rather abysmal at this point. (Reuters)

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    Content: Amazon has reportedly invested $300 million for content in India, which is higher than most budgets of top entertainment channels. Amazon may not have great TV shows currently, but its movie selections, especially in the Indian content arena is impressive. Amazon Prime Video is investing heavily into acquiring TV shows, films and originals. Currently, its USP in India is the standup comedy specials. (Image: Website)

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    Content: Hotstar mostly contains curated content from the Star Parivar, and recently Sarabhai’s reboot. It also offers HBO shows on it’s paid tier, which means and you guessed it, Game of Thrones. it also has quite a few good shows like Modern Family and a decent English movie collection. It enables users to watch TV shows, films as well as sports, all under one platform. It has movies and TV shows in English, Hindi, Telugu, Marathi, Tamil and Malayalam. It gets a lot of views from its premium subscribers for the English Premier League games. (Image: Website)

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    Downloads and Video quality: Netflix can play high-quality videos at lower internet speeds which is a huge plus for the Indian viewers. On-app downloads are available. (AP Photo)

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    Downloads and Video quality: In Amazon, even if you choose to stream the video at the ‘Best Quality’ at a normal bandwidth, the video can run at 480p maximum. On-app downloads are available. (Reuters)

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    Downloads and Video quality: Hotstar faces the same video quality issue on its platform. On-app downloads are available, but only for Indian Content. (Image: Website)

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    If we consider the overall experience which includes content, price, and streaming quality, Netflix wins hands down. But if we have to consider watching mostly Indian content and Cricket with some okayish Western shows, Hotstar does the job. However, if you wish to go for a really low budget, and at the same time want to see generic good content online, Amazon Prime Video is not a bad choice. (Reuters)

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      1. D
        Don Bradman
        Jul 12, 2017 at 9:01 pm
        Since Jeff Bezos is the 2nd richest man in the world, Amazon has a massive advantage over Netflix and especially Hotstar since they dont depend entirely on revenue generated from the streaming service so they charge much lower price which will be impossible for Hotstar they will go bankrupt otherwise and Netflix nearly a decade to come down since it is a massive empire. If you purchase Amazon you get much better benefits than Jio TV, Jio Cinema, Eros Now, Voot TV, Amazon, Hotstar, Tata Sky, Ditto TV, SonyLiv, Hungama Play, Yupp TV, TVF Play Telecom services like Airtel and others which provide their own apps. Although its regional content is very poor since they provide the same content that is available in for only the broadband price they dont charge extra. Not to mention they censor also, already Asia is very infamous for it then Amazon further worsens it. All 3 companies are very poor in downloads they badly need to improve it.
        Reply
        1. D
          Don Bradman
          Jul 12, 2017 at 8:45 pm
          A completely biased article. Its obvious that either Netflix paid for it or you are a Netflix fanatic. Compared to the Original Netflix in US its absolutely useless in India, its mainly for the rich educated people in India who have a good command of English and love Hollywood with a lot of money to burn since for subscribing to the service you are actually paying 6000 for Basic content and 9600 for Premium per annum such horrible pricing. Amazon charges 500 Hotstar 2388. If you compare the Indian content its horrible. They dont cater to the average Indian since it only has a few good movies and definitely not the poor they are just like Snapchat. Hotstar is very good although not as good as s in India like Sockshare etc for english content they obviously suffer from same problems that Amazon, Netflix, others Music s suffer from in India. You cant compare Hotstar with Netflix Amazon because they are fortune 300 companies and Hotstar is nowhere near.
          Reply

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