Revenue of the Indian video over-the-top (OTT) market that is dominated by players such as Amazon Prime Video, Netflix and Disney+ Hotstar is set to double from $1.8 billion in 2022 to $3.5 billion by 2027, according to PwC’s latest report, titled ‘Global Entertainment & Media Outlook 2023–2027: India perspective’. Besides, the Indian market is growing much faster with a CAGR of 14.32% for the five-year period, while the global growth rate for the OTT segment is 8.4%, the report said. This comes at a time when global entertainment giant Disney is reportedly considering selling its India business that includes OTT player Disney+ Hotstar and Star television channels. “With new launches from international players and increasing ‘pay-lite’ options, OTT revenue surged in India to reach USD 1.8 billion in 2022 – over six times the revenue of 2018 and a 25.1% increase from USD 1.4 billion in 2021. In India, the market will continue to grow at an impressive rate of 14.3%, yielding a revenue of USD 3.5 billion in 2027,” the report released on Tuesday said. Highlighting OTTs as one of the select growth hotspots in the Indian media and entertainment space, the report pointed out that there is huge long-term potential for the OTT and connected TV (CTV) market in India, courtesy the size and diversity of the country’s population. “OTT video will continue to get its boost from regional play. 5G and broadband infrastructure, if improved further in the country, will open an even bigger market for OTT players.”This is against the backdrop of OTT players struggling to get Indians to pay for content now, after enjoying a boom for the past few years. The 60-odd OTT platforms in India are now faced with a challenge: How to scale up their costly content business in the entertainment-crazy but price-conscious Indian market, especially when the viewers are spoilt for choice. The average Indian viewer is used to paying around Rs 300 a month for cable or direct-to-home (DTH) subscriptions. But even a top-end telecom-bundled pack of 10-12 OTT apps costs Rs 1,000-1,200 a month. And subscribing even to the top two or three OTT platforms costs upwards of Rs 3,000 a year. And there are around 60 platforms on offer currently. The PwC report points out that ad-supported streaming will become the new normal. In India, just as globally, revenue growth will be driven by the competitive subscription video on demand (SVOD) sector. However, the proportion of advertising-supported video on demand (AVOD) revenue is projected to rise steadily. By 2027, AVOD, largely from local and regional broadcasters, will account for 22.3% of OTT revenue, while SVOD will have a 73.8% share. In 2022, SVOD accounted for 78.1% of the market revenue in India, while AVOD constituted 15% of the market revenue, the report said.