With growing diversity in content creator base and rising interest in gaming related content, Google-owned YouTube now has over 325 Mn monthly active users (over the age of 18) in India, as per the latest Comscore numbers, the company said in its annual Brandcast announcements.
Besides the growing user numbers, Google added that over 2,500 creator channels in India have crossed 1 Mn subscribers, with nine channels having over 10 Mn subscribers. Further, YouTube saw over 45% growth in the overall watch time in July as against the same time last year, as per a series of videos Google released for the India numbers.
“Two out of every three users say they would rather give up TV than YouTube for a month,” — Sanjay Gupta, country head & vice president, Google India
In terms of content genres, gaming videos are seeing the highest engagement, with watch time soaring 2x as compared to last year, while baking videos (undoubtedly linked to the lockdown) saw 3x the watch time in the same period.
Google said Indian content creators are gaining renown around the world for their approach to education and learning with the success of WifiStudy underlining this. Google said the channel has over 12 Mn subscribers and over 1.5 Bn total views in Asia Pacific.
YouTube has also seen a staggering growth in its vernacular or Indian regional language content. Last year, more than 95% of the online video consumption is in Indian languages and Bengali content was growing more than 100% year-on-year in watch time. This year, Google said Hindi led the charts, followed by Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Bengali and others.
The boom in content consumption in rural India and among regional language users in the past few years coincides with the growing internet penetration. As per a report in June, data from CSC e-Governance Services shows that data consumption in BharatNet fibre backbone connected panchayats spiked to 150 terabytes (TB) in May from just 55 TB in January.
According to CSC data, YouTube emerged the most used digital media platform in rural India, followed by Facebook and Netflix in May. However, growth for Netflix between January and May stood at 422%, which was faster than the growth numbers for YouTube and Facebook (219% and 374%) for the same period.