TV channels that are based in India and Pakistan are currently feeling the pressure to keep up with the increasing threats of over-the-top (OTT) services in the United Kingdom.
US-based digital platforms like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video as well as services based in India like Hotstar, ZEE5, and Voot have attracted substantial viewership numbers to the detriment of the traditional TV broadcasters.
South Asian TV channels serving the UK are thinking about their situation and future in the country where OTT services are indubitably reigning.
ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Limited is reported to be downsizing its current staff numbers in the UK. It is strengthening the market presence of ZEE5, its digital product.
Moreover, ZEE is modifying its TV channels to mostly digital-only, discontinuing linear services on traditional TV.
Youth-oriented channel, Zing, is currently performing well, yet it may find more audiences online. On the other hand, Lifestyle TV channel, Living Foodz, continues to find a declining audience share.
Similarly, ZEE Network’s &TV, which is its second entertainment channel, has significantly nosedived in UK ratings since its launching.
Its weekly viewership has decreased to a record number below 200,000. In addition, Geo Kahani is the second entertainment channel from Pakistan’s Geo TV. It has been struggling since its introduction in the UK.
In spite of the serious attempts of reviving Geo Kahani, the TV channel has continued to lose grip of its audiences.
As OTT services make re-runs readily viewable online nowadays, Rishtey, a TV channel devoted to airing old programs, has lost its popularity.
News18, IndiaCast’s news channel, has also seen its ratings continue to be lower than accepted. It has been among the least watched South Asian news channel in the British Isles.
Music channel, MTV Beats, has remained on the losing end relative to its rival, Sony Mix. The latter has kept up through people’s conversations and cross-channel marketing.
Another Pakistani TV channel, A Plus, has grappled with low viewing rates. A Plus may have released a number of new programming with hopes of sparking interest to the audiences.
However, the cutthroat competition with its formidable competitors like the ARY Family, Hum TV, and Geo TV has only made the channel struggle even further.
As OTT services are winning against traditional TV broadcasters, the latter have to change the way they deliver their programming to their audiences.
The future is, apparently, digital. Thus, these TV channels may survive only if they adapt to current and future demands.
Otherwise, they would continue to be rendered to obsolescence, with viewers further turning to OTT platforms for their entertainment.