(CT News) – Amazon is looking to expand its presence in the lucrative video market in India as it now wants to acquire one of the biggest video players in that market.
There is no doubt that ad-supported businesses are the way to go in India when it comes to Internet technology.
There are reports that Amazon is negotiating with Times Internet for the acquisition of MX Player, one of the most popular streaming services in India, according to people familiar with the matter.
There are reports that Times Internet, one of the country’s largest media conglomerates that offers several internet-related products and services, is also in talks with Amazon and other major players in the market.
MX Player is an Indian video streaming and video on-demand service that was originally developed by MX Media before being acquired by Times India in the late 90’s.
The service is accessed by more than 280 million people worldwide, with 150 million of them based in India alone. Using advertising revenue, the company is able to offer its users access to a huge local library of VOD videos in 11 different languages, as well as live cable TV channels.
As an app available on Android, iOS, and the web, MX Player was acquired by Times Internet in 2018 for a price of $140 million.
With a wide range of video formats available and a high degree of service reliability, the service gained popularity in India thanks to the wide range of available video formats and the fact that the service is accessible to low-cost Android smartphones, the most popular mobile devices in the country.
During the past few years, Amazon has spent over $7 billion on the Indian market.
The e-commerce and cloud giant is making real efforts to compete in India’s VOD market, where Amazon has a cheaper subscription to Prime Video (plus Prime membership) and a free, ad-supported service called Amazon miniTV.
In comparison with YouTube, however, both Amazon and MX Player are second-rate services.
According to data provided by mobile intelligent company Sensor Tower, Alphabet’s video platform has approximately half a billion monthly active users in India. Netflix and Prime Video have fewer than 40 million active monthly users in the United States.
It is likely that MX Player will not remain part of Times Internet’s properties for very long, whether it is Amazon, Zee-Sony or another interested party.
As the media conglomerate prepares for a major restructuring, it is selling off several businesses, including exam preparation platform Gradeup and restaurant technology service Dineout.