The Mumbai Film Festival is underway right now, just as Netflix announces it will be producing 5-6 original TV series in India.
This three months after Amazon’s first India original TV series Inside Edge went live.
And this in turn following Amazon’s announcement in December 2016 that it would be launching 17 original programmes for the India market.
Because as of December 2016 Amazon Video is available in over 200 countries and territories. That’s far wider reach than Amazon’s Kindle store. But then, Amazon Video is older than the Kindle store, having begun way back in the digital stone-age of 2006.
Today Amazon has an estimated 9.5 million Prime subscribers in India, all of whom have access to Amazon video. That’s more than double Netflix’s 4.2 million Indian subscribers, but of course some Prime subscribers may not be the least interested in Amazon video while by definition Netflix subscribers are there for the video viewing.
In any case Amazon and Netflix are late to the India market and small-time players (for now) compared to Eros Now, India’s biggest content producer. But Amazon, Netflix, and, interestingly, Apple, are said to be looking at splashing a billion to acquire the Eros Now backlist catalogue of content. And that could be a game-changer in a country where home-grown content and local language content is still by far the biggest attraction.
As of February 2017 Amazon had spent about $75 million on video in India, with Livemint reporting Amazon and Netflix had both earmarked a further $300 million for video content investment on the sub-continent.
But let’s get back to books and how this impacts on the publishing industry.
One of the more amusing discussion arising on the publishing-is-doomed circuit is the idea that the rise and rise of video on demand is another nail in the coffin of the publishing industry.
Which of course totally ignores the small points that many movies and TV series are based on books, and there are an untold number of book spin-offs from successful original films and TV shows.
And don’t get me started on the books about cinema, about TV shows, about film and TV stars, about…
Just for fun, check out this PopSugar list of 100 books to read before the film comes out.