India has a diverse, growing selection of cable alternatives, ranging from internationally renowned services like Netflix to niche streaming services to Bollywood-centric streaming services and more. Keep reading to learn about all the major streaming services that are available in India.
On-Demand Streaming Services
With over 100,000 hours of content, Hotstar is one of the largest on-demand streaming services available in India. Along with all kinds of Bollywood titles, Hotstar also has US-produced series and movies. Spider-Man, Harry Potter, Pulp Fiction and The Big Bang Theory are just a few of the US titles that Hotstar provides.
The fact that Netflix has a presence in India may come as no surprise. After all, Netflix is available in just about every country on the planet. What you may not know is that Netflix has its own India-based production company. Subscribers can enjoy original content like Ghost Stories, a Netflix India horror anthology. Other Netflix India originals include Bard of Blood, Sacred Games and Lust Stories.
Amazon Prime Video
If you’re an Amazon Prime subscriber, you can use Amazon Prime Video for free in India. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Sneaky Pete and Fleabag are just a small sample of Amazon’s growing list of critically acclaimed originals.
Indian broadband company and mobile network operator Jio has its own streaming service. If you get phone or broadband service through Jio, you can access JioCinema for free. One of the best things about JioCinema is that it has forged a partnership with Disney. This has allowed the streaming service to add movies from Marvel and Pixar to its large on-demand catalog.
HOOQ– a Singapore-based international on-demand streaming service– is also available in India. Its catalog contains over 35,000 hours of video content, including Hollywood movies as well as plenty of movies and shows produced in India and elsewhere.
Viacom’s Voot provides yet another option for watching on-demand movies and shows in India. Its library includes not only Bollywood films but also content from Nickelodeon, MTV and other US-based production companies.
Eros Now is yet another Netflix-like on-demand service that’s based in India. Its on-demand library contains 11,000 titles– some of which are Eros Now originals. Subscribers get both Bollywood and Hollywood movies. India-based production companies that have partnered with Eros Now include ZEE TV, Salman Khan Films and Dharma Productions.
ALTBalaji has sought to distinguish itself from the growing number of video-on-demand providers in India by specializing in Bollywood content and carving out a niche in kids’ entertainment. In 2017, the streaming service announced that it would be producing three new kids’ titles: Moe Doe, Ding Dong Bell and Happy Lucky Ki Katti Batti.
Founded in 2008, BIGflix was the first on-demand movie service in India. Like ALTBalaji, BIGflix caters to fans of Bollywood movies and shows. BIGflix’s catalog includes over 2,000 titles across nine different languages. With more than 3.9 million users, it’s one of the most popular streaming services on the continent.
ZEE5 is similar to ALTBalaji and BIGflix in that it’s also a Bollywood-centric on-demand streaming service. Its most unique feature is that it has produced more original content than most other competing services. This month, the service will release its first original sports drama, Bombers. Other popular ZEE5 originals include The Final Call, Abhay and Skyfire.
Viu is an international on-demand streaming service from Hong Kong. Though Viu’s niche is Asian content, it also has all kinds of locally-produced content, as well– including Bollywood shows and movies. A new Viu feature called Viu Engage lets fans interact with their favorite stars’ social media accounts in real time.
Tubi TV is a free, ad-supported streaming service from San Francisco, California. Available on-demand titles include content from Paramount Pictures, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Lionsgate, Universal Pictures and other US-based movie and TV show production companies.
If you like art films, it’s hard to find a better streaming service than Mubi. One of the best things about Mubi is the fact that it’s constantly rotating its content library. Once a new title comes in, it stays in the catalog for 30 days– then it’s replaced by something new.
Hungama is a Bollywood streaming service that offers not only on-demand movies and TV shows, but also music, video games and more. Hungama Digital Media Entertainment– the company that owns the Hungama streaming service– owns a gaming company called Vroovy, a social gaming portal called The Game Box, a digital marketing company called Hungama Digital Services and an indie music platform called AristAloud.
TVFPlay’s specialty is original content. Pitchers, Permanent Roommates, Yeh Meri Family, Tripling, Humorously Yours, Barely Speaking with Arnub, The Aam Aadmi Family, Chai Sutta Chronicles, Inmates, Bisht, Please!, F.A.T.H.E.R.S and Bachelors are just a few of the original Indian shows available through this unique on-demand streaming service.
Muvizz offers classic, cult and independent films to cinema aficionados around the world. Various social features let Muvizz subscribers talk about the films and shows that Muvizz provides.
Hoichoi’s niche is on-demand Bengali-language content. The brand name Hoichoi translates to “non-stop excitement.”
iTunes– Apple’s on-demand service– is available in India. Though it’s somewhat pricey compared to other streaming services that let you buy or rent content, iTunes does tend to get some titles before they appear in other ecosystems.
Google Play is similar to iTunes, but is more convenient for people with Android devices.
What list of streaming services would be complete without YouTube? It’s one of the biggest collections of user-generated, on-demand video content on the internet.
Hybrid Live and On-Demand Streaming Services
Like Voot and HOOQ, SonyLIV offers a diverse menu of entertainment content. Along with on-demand Bollywood and American-made movies and shows, SonyLIV customers can also enjoy Japanese anime and live TV. Sony purchased the right to broadcast the FIFA World Cup games in 2018.
Sun NXT offers both live TV streams and on-demand content in four different Indian languages: Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada. Flexible subscription options let you pay for whatever languages you’re most interested in.
Spuul is a Bollywood streaming service that also delivers over 100 live Indian, Nepali, Bangladeshi and Pakistani TV channel streams. Its on-demand catalog contains more than 10,000 of content.
YuppTV was originally meant to give Indians living in the US a way to watch TV and movies. Now, it’s available nearly everywhere– including India. In addition to 25,000 hours of on-demand content, YuppTV users can also watch sports games and all kinds of live regional channels.
JioTV is similar to YuppTV in that it’s a live TV / on-demand streaming service that has a lot to offer when it comes to sports. Its key differentiator is that it offers more than 100 HD channels.
Airtel TV’s most distinguishing feature is that it has more live news channels than most of the other on-demand / live TV combo streaming services that are available in India. The on-demand catalog contains over 10,000 titles.
Alex Munkachy is a freelance writer, game developer and hobby robotics enthusiast. You can find his blog about robotics news and reviews at robotfanatics.com.