Taking a leaf out of leading private broadcasters’ book such as Star India which runs video over-the-top (OTT) platform Hotstar and Viacom18’s Voot, public broadcaster Prasar Bharati is drafting a plan to foray into digital broadcast to revamp its prime-time content on Doordarshan.
Speaking to Financial Express at ‘Create4India’ conference organised by the Digital India Foundation, Shashi Shekhar Vempati, CEO Prasar Bharati, did not disclose whether the broadcaster would launch a single video OTT app or would run a set of channels on YouTube, stating that the details will be finalised as part of the company’s three-years vision plan.
Citing the example of DD Kisan, Vempati added that instead of viewers watching linear content, the channel can be transformed into a digital platform such as an on-demand app.
The pubcaster, which is planning to launch an English news channel, will also have a digital presence via an on-demand app. Instead of launching the channel in international markets, which would further increase the cost of operations, an app is a more cost-effective solution.
“When viewers want to watch real news, they watch DD News. We want to further cash in on the reach of DD News by launching a 24-hour dedicated English news channel,” said Vempati.
The digital platform would focus on South Asia, North America, Europe, Middle East, Africa, China and Asia-Pacific. It would provide in-depth commentary on areas like global economy, geo-politics, terror, global crises and soft power.
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Earlier, it was reported by PTI that Prasar Bharati has set its eyes on a high-tech digital platform to challenge the “anti-India” narrative in foreign media and to report events from the country’s perspective to global audiences.
At present, online video streaming market is growing significantly. Last year, we witnessed the entry of global online video streaming leaders such as Netflix and Amazon Prime, as well as the launch of major broadcast network backed platforms, such as Voot (Viacom 18) and OZee (Zee TV).
According to the data from app analytics firm App Annie Inc, Hotstar is a top video streaming app in terms of monthly active usage followed by JioTV and JioCinema.