The CEO of Netflix, now the world's largest online streaming company and a 'disruptor' of traditional entertainment TV, has expressed admiration for Reliance Jio. CEO Reed Hastings believes every country needs a Jio. “Reliance Jio has been a transformational network in India and has brought down data cost massively,” Hastings told ET in an interview. Saying that he'd been taken aback by the success of the network in such a short period of time, he added, “We hope someone would do a Reliance Jio in every other country.”
Netflix and its competitor Hotstar are natural allies for Jio - Jio's free or close to free data plans have expanded internet access rapidly in the country, and streaming platforms like Netflix need users with internet access at large scale to be profitable. Netflix India has been investing heavily in local content to boost its appeal. Hotstar has also seen rapid growth - Online video consumption grew an estimated 5X in India in 2017 compared to the previous year.
Hastings didn't comment on the charges made by Jio's competitors about unfair practices, predatory pricing and regulatory capture, all of which Airtel and Idea say, have allowed the company to win subscribers over at a faster rate, and at the cost of telecom competition.