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Walmart’s Flipkart Planning Free Video Streaming Service in India

Walmart’s Indian ecommerce company Flipkart is taking a page from Amazon’s playbook and planning to launch a video streaming service in India, according to Bloomberg, though its strategy raises several questions.

Flipkart is not initially planning to produce original content, according to the article. That’s different from Amazon, which has invested heavily in original content for India. Instead, Flipkart is planning to license content from Disney and local studios.

It’s unclear whether a strategy of licensing from Disney will remain viable for Flipkart. For one thing, Disney is planning to launch its own streaming service in the U.S. later this year, with plans to eventually go global. And a key part of Disney’s strategy is to keep its content for itself. Disney also already has a rival streaming service in India (Hotstar). Perhaps Flipkart will have more luck licensing content from Indian studios.

Flipkart’s video service will be free, according to Bloomberg, like its loyalty program. Amazon Prime in India costs 999 rupees, or the equivalent of $14, so Flipkart’s plan to charge nothing gives it a price advantage. But it’s unclear what its customers will get out of it.

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