India is becoming a hotbed for more and more OTT streaming services for expansion, even experimentation.
Samsung TV Plus, Samsung’s free over-the-top video streaming service for its smart TVs and Galaxy phones, is coming to India in 2021. Samsung TV Plus is currently available in 12 countries including the US, Canada, UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Austria, Korea, Australia, and Brazil, bringing live and on-demand TV from around 300 broadcast networks, content platforms and digital creators to over 60 million Samsung Smart TVs.
The service is also available on select Samsung Galaxy phones in the US, including Galaxy S9, S10, S20, Note 9, Note 10, Note 20, Fold, Z Flip, Xcover, A51, and A71–with additional devices to become available in the coming months.
“In 2021, Samsung will continue to expand TV Plus to other markets, with plans to launch in Mexico, India, Sweden and more European countries,” the South Korean major said in a press release. Though no more concrete details have been shared, Samsung touts Samsung TV Plus as a ‘100% free’ service with over 15 million active users. Unlike Netflix, Amazon Prime, and others, there are no paid subscriptions–or necessary debit/credit card signs ups–on Samsung TV Plus.
The service made its debut in 2015 and comes pre-installed on Samsung Smart TVs dating back to 2016 (subject to market availability). With India becoming a market for expansion in the days to come, Samsung TV Plus should come bundled with new smart TVs while existing users should get it via an OTA. It is not immediately clear if Samsung also plans to make it available on Galaxy phones in India.
“Samsung continues to add top tier channels and content familiar with TV viewers,” Samsung said, hinting that the service will rope in local players as and when it makes its foray into the Indian market.
India is becoming a hotbed for more and more OTT streaming services for expansion, even experimentation. This is in part due to the proliferation of the smart TV market and relatively more affordable data plans–there’s just so much potential.
It is too early to say if Samsung TV Plus will compete directly with Netflix, Amazon Prime, or even Hotstar and Sony Liv, and if yes, how it would go about doing that. For now, it seems more like a service complimentary to Samsung smart TVs, that should help Samsung tick one more box to entice people into buying them–and subsequently into its whole ecosystem.