Yes, you read the headline absolutely correct. Netflix subscription is going totally free in India but only for 48 hours. These 48 hours are being termed as a “StreamFest” event hosted by Netflix, and the brand is starting the campaign with India. The campaign would subsequently be held in all the other countries where the brand provides its services, but it is hosting this event exclusively for its Indian viewers.
Netflix will give full access to all types of content in its entertainment library and set its doors open before the users and viewers but only for 48 hours. An early notification/pop-up about this event(trial basically) can be seen on the app’s latest version for Android devices.
When asked about the reason behind holding this campaign, COO Greg Peters replied that through conducting this event, the company aims to increase its subscriber/engagement count on the platform so that more people go for “Netflix” as an online streaming platform than anyone else. This is a strategic move to multiply the platform subscription’s sales and its contents to gather high earnings and brand value.
Mishaal Rahman of XDA Developers first discovered the event in his app version. The app version 7.78.0 build 11 35157 holds in-app text strings pointing to the “StreamFest” trial event. The promotional event is starting from 4th December this year and will remain active for 48 hours from its unveiling time. This event would be very different from the one which Netflix previously used to hold, i.e., the 30-day trial period where the user had to enter his/her credit/debit card details and had to choose a plan based on which the platform would start charging the specific user post the promotional period. The user could also delete his/her account anytime and join the network with a new account. The current event is short-lived and would not be asking the user for such details. However, to sign up for the event entering the individual’s phone no. and e-mail address is mandatory to receive reminder notifications from the platform. As read by one of the text strings, “The same information does not need to be used when you create your account before you start watching for free.”
Even though the event is free, it sure does come with limited access. One of the text strings says, “Netflix StreamFest is at capacity.” This means that this promotional event is not for all users in the country and maybe another limited-group experiment conducted by the company.
Netflix has over 15.8 million subscribers worldwide and can surely be called the “leader” of the streaming giants, among other streaming services. However, it failed to meet its objectives in the third quarter of this year, where it could only add 2.2 million subscribers to its customer stack. Additionally, it is also getting tough competition from other streaming services such as Disney+ Hotstar, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, HBO Max, etc. especially in the Indian market. Hence, this promotional event is being conducted to ease the company’s efforts in reaching its goals. Lastly, COO Greg Peters said this during the earnings call held on Tuesday, “We think that giving everyone in a country access to Netflix for free for a weekend could be a great way to expose a bunch of new people to the amazing stories that we have.”