Helped by a rapid growth in Internet user base, Google-owned video platform YouTube is witnessing a rise in the number of content creators and viewers in vernacular languages including Hindi, Tamil and Bengali in smaller cities and towns.
Helped by a rapid growth in Internet user base, Google-owned video platform YouTube is witnessing a rise in the number of content creators and viewers in vernacular languages including Hindi, Tamil and Bengali in smaller cities and towns. According to YouTube Head of Family and Learning Partnerships Don Anderson, users in India are using YouTube to learn a range of things – right from “how to tie a tie” to even learning farming techniques. “About a year ago, there were 12 learning channels in India that had over one million subscribers, that number has now grown to over 70 channels. These 70 channels have 142 million subscribers and one billion views between them,” he added.
Also, there are hundreds of education and learning channels which have more than one lakh subscribers, he said. “India’s Internet user base is now spread well beyond metros and this is reflected in the content on the platform. Both content creators and viewers are coming in large numbers from tier II, III cities and even small towns,” Anderson said.
He added that the platform is emerging as the largest supplementary learning platform for users across India, with learning videos generating hundreds of millions of views on YouTube every single day. “We are now actively investing in accelerating the growth of learning content on YouTube through mentorship for our creators across languages, and funds for them to develop high quality content on a wide variety of topics,” he said. Anderson said, previously, content was primarily in English but as Internet connectivity expands across the country, a significant amount of content is being created in vernacular languages including Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Bengali and Malayalam.
There is a strong demand for content across different topics in local Indian languages like government and public service entrance exams, English language tutorials, content on science and maths, and even around topics like farming, photography, music and dance, cricket, and financial literacy.
Anderson cited the example of ‘wifi study’ – which is the largest learning channel in India – that live streams upto 30 videos a day with live Q&A, and has crossed nine million subscribers this year. Another user, Sandeep Singh Dhillon was inspired by ‘Darshan-Farming Leader’ YouTube channel and started creating content around goat farming. Currently, Dhillon has over 44,000 subscribers and is helping other farmers on newer breeding methods, goat rearing and animal health.