Why Reliance Jio's First-Day-First-Show irks multiplex brands?
At RIL's 42nd AGM earlier this week, Mukesh Ambani made several announcements including one that has perturbed the cinema exhibition sector. Dubbed as Jio First-Day-First-Show, the new service will allow premium Jio Fiber customers to watch movies the same day they get released on big screens. And considering the soaring price of movie tickets, the choice for consumers looks pretty simple. Here's our analysis.
So, what is Jio First-Day-First-Show?
Jio First-Day-First-Show, set to launch in the middle of 2020, will allow premium Jio Fiber users to watch the latest movies the same day when they get released on big screens. While details regarding the plans will be known at a later stage, the service has great potential to disrupt the cinema exhibition sector India considering its inherent benefits.
How will consumers benefit from this service?
Today, prime and executive category seats can cost anywhere around Rs. 700-1,000 (including taxes) per person. Hence, you'd be spending upwards of Rs. 3,000 for watching three or four titles a month. However, Jio's First-Day-First-Show will come bundled for free with Jio Fiber plans. Hence, you'll be able to enjoy movies at a much cheaper cost, and with your entire family at your convenience.
Clearly, PVR and INOX haven't liked the idea of First-Day-First-Show
Both INOX and PVR have criticized Jio's new service, with the latter saying that producers in India have "mutually agreed to an exclusive theatrical window of 8 weeks, between the theatrical release of a movie, and release on any other platform." INOX highlighted that this model is also followed internationally as it "ensures the robust financial viability of all the segments of the sector."
But what about producers and distributors?
While INOX and PVR raise important points, we know producers are entitled to choose the platform for distribution and consumption of movies. But given Reliance Jio's deep pockets, the company will leave no tables unturned to expand Jio Fiber's consumer base. After all, India's broadband sector is fairly untapped and the film industry is set to hit $3.7 billion by next year. Win-win situation?
Food for thought: Can multiplexes and Jio's service co-exist?
The big screen and booming sound experience offered by cinema-halls will never be matched by our televisions or smartphones. However, it gets outdone by the benefit of watching a movie with friends and family, on the first day itself at your desired time. Hence, it'll be interesting to see how producers get onboard with Jio's First-Day-First-Show service and if the two options can co-exist?