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StreamFest is here for Indians to 'Netflix & Chill'

Non-users of Netflix can sign up with their name, email or phone number.

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KOLKATA: The much-hyped Netflix StreamFest is finally here. The global streaming giant is offering Indian users free access to its vast content portfolio during this weekend (5-6 December).

"At Netflix, we want to bring the most amazing stories from across the world to all fans of entertainment in India. It's why we're hosting StreamFest: an entire weekend (5 December 12.01am - 6 December 11.59pm) — of free Netflix," Netflix India vice president (content) Monika Shergill said in a blogpost.

Non-subscribers to Netflix can sign up with their name, email or phone number, and password and start streaming without any payment. However, those who sign up for StreamFest will get access to only one stream in standard definition. This has been done to ensure everyone who comes in gets the best experience.

"So, during StreamFest, if you see a message saying ‘StreamFest is at capacity’, don't worry. We'll let you know as soon as you can start streaming," Shergill noted.

Netflix has been promoting StreamFest aggressively through television and its social media platforms for over a month. It has released ad films featuring Anil Kapoor, Yami Gautam, and Nawazuddin Siddiqui. A recent promotional video featuring prominent content creators including Tanmay Bhat, YouTuber Ashish Chanchalani, former FilterCopy actors Ahsaas Channa and Aisha Ahmed, and vlogger Kusha Kapila was released on social platforms.

“That’s right, it’s time to cancel your plans and settle in to watch Netflix. We don’t need any payment details – just your love and undivided attention,” the streaming service said on its website.

“We think that giving everyone in a country access to Netflix for free for a weekend could be a great idea to expose a bunch of new people to the amazing stories we have and hopefully get a bunch of them to sign up. We will try that in India and we will see how that goes,” Netflix COO and chief products officer Greg Peters said earlier in an earnings call.

Elara Capital VP research analyst (media) Karan Taurani said this is a good marketing strategy and a mode of substitution to the monthly free trial which Netflix used to offer earlier. According to him, Netflix has to get new subscribers at the end of the day through some kind of free trial. He added that two days is ample for users to sample a good amount of content. Taurani noted that the streaming giant has to keep rolling out such attractive promotion plans to increase its subscriber base.

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