Television

Prasar may soon launch OTT, keep tabs on DD costs, exploit reach

MUMBAI: When almost all the broadcasters -- Indian and foreign -- have an OTT platform of their own, how could India's own pubcaster be left behind. Although it's a tad late, but it's never too late. Prasar Bharati is drafting a plan to foray into digital broadcast even as the public broadcaster plans to revamp prime-time content on Doordarshan for which several ideas are in the works.

Prasar Bharati CEO Shashi Shekhar Vempati told FE that, instead of viewers watching linear content, DD Kisan, for example, could be transformed into a digital platform such an on-demand app – which would permit farmers to view content on the move, and would also help them get information on farming subjects.

Speaking on the sidelines of ‘Create4India’ conference hosted by the Digital India Foundation, Vempati did not clarify whether the pubcaster would launch a single-video OTT app or would have a set of channels on YouTube, stating that the details would be finalised later as part of Prasar's three-years vision.

About Prasar's plans to launch an English news channel, he quipped that real news was DD News. He said he wanted to exploit the reach of DD News by launching a 24-hour dedicated English news channel. The news channel will also have an on-demand app.

So as to keep costs under control, Vempati said that, instead of launching the channel in international markets, an app was a cost-efficient solution.

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