Indians love telecom plan bundled with OTT media services

New Delhi, Feb 17 (IANS) A large number of Indians appear to have fallen in love with telecom plans that come bundled with over-the-top (OTT) media services, suggests a new survey which found that carrier-bundled media services drive consumers to spend more and maintain loyalty to service providers.

About 44 per cent of Indian respondents said that bundling media services with their telecom plan was the main reason they were willing to spend more on their mobile and fixed broadband bills, said the study by software and services provider Amdocs and consultancy firm Ovum.

The survey found that 56 per cent of Indian digital consumers already subscribe to more than one paid online video service.

More than half of these consumers said they subscribe to more than one service to meet the needs of different household members, while 42 per cent said no single service provider offers all the content they want -- a reflection, perhaps, of the strong demand for local content in India.

Nearly half of the respondents from India said access to a telecom plan bundled with media services made them less likely to switch providers, while 30 per cent said they might switch in the absence of bundled offers by their current provider.

"Indian consumers have demonstrated a healthy appetite for premium over-the-top media services, with most already paying for multiple OTT online video streaming services," Pankaj Lamba, Customer Business Executive, APAC, Amdocs, said in a statement.

"Our research shows that this market is willing to spend even more on their monthly telecom bill in exchange for the right bundle, with the right offer, at the right price point. To deliver this, communications service providers must address OTT partner onboarding and integration challenges while rapidly scale, devise new pricing models for different user segments, and ensure a frictionless end-user experience to ensure successful OTT monetization," Lamba added.

The pay-per-use model looks more promising for India than monthly subscriptions with 69 per cent of Indian respondents saying they would pay one-time passes for specific content, or short-term access to content, to avoid paying a full subscription.

In fact, the average online video subscription - Rs 306 - is too expensive for nearly 60 per cent of consumers, said the study.

The maximum consumers would willingly pay for a monthly online video subscription is: Rs 50-200 (22 per cent); Rs 201-400 (30 per cent); Rs 401-600 (22 per cent); Rs 600-800 (12 per cent); Rs 800 (7 per cent), the results showed.

The research showed that 70 per cent of the respondents were willing to share personal data and accept targeted ads in exchange for a discounted or free service.

Not surprisingly, rural respondents (81 per cent) expressed a higher willingness than their urban peers (76 per cent) to share personal data for this benefit.

The study surveyed almost 4,000 consumers in five emerging and developed countries in Asia Pacific, with over half of the respondents coming from India.

Other countries surveyed included the Philippines, Thailand, Australia and Singapore.

The research also included qualitative conversations with 13 communications service providers and 12 OTT media players in the region.