RadioandMusic
| 18 Oct 2018
A 100 per cent spike in regional music streaming; a boon for the app industry

MUMBAI: While there is heavy traffic for Bollywood and international music being streamed or downloaded, regional music is the surprise element for the industry. Recently, it was reported that Bharti Airtel's Wynk Music has crossed 75 million mark of app install, since it's launch four years ago. It was evident that Bollywood had a lion's share in this mark, what could not be ignored is the 100 per cent rise in downloading of regional music.  Music in Tamil, Telugu, Punjabi and Kannada accounted for the bulk of the growth in regional content. About 13 per cent of its active users came in from rural India, contributing nearly 10 per cent to the overall daily streams.

WYNK CEO Sameer Batra shared a deep insight on the same. He said, “There are multiple factors that have driven this growth on Wynk Music. An ever-expanding regional song library and ease of discovery allow more users to access their kind of music in the language of their choice. Also, with the adoption of smart phones across Tier II/ III regions coupled with better network speeds across India, more and more mobile-first customers are using our apps.”

Wynk has a collection of over three million songs, including popular music in 12 Indian regional languages. Batra further added, “Streams in regional languages doubled up, driven by growth in Tamil, Telugu, Punjabi and Kannada music streams. Interestingly, this year Punjabi pop come back in a big way. The popularity of tracks such as High Rated Gabru, Backbone, 3 Peg etc. on the app was at par with mainstream Bollywood tracks.” 

Given the fact that Independent music is blossoming in India and finding a space here, Batra agrees that there is a rise traction because of independent music. He explains, “While film music is still predictably big all over India, we saw a lot of traction on independent music in 2017. Whether it was established artists like Rahat Fateh Ali Khan and Anirudh Ravichander coming out with independent singles, or YouTube artists such as Darshan Raval making their debut on streaming apps- the year was abuzz with music releases that revived India’s independent music scene.  And as mentioned earlier, Punjabi Pop numbers by artists such as Baadshah, Harrdy Sandhu, Guru Randhawa among others have rocked the charts all year round.”

This upward movement in app installation is certainly benefiting the companies. To this Batra said, “The benefits of ensuring locally relevant content is available and discoverable on the app are manifold. Music has to be a personalized experience and language selection plays a huge role in ensuring it is so, which is essential for long-term user retention. Further, deeper regional penetration will remain a strategic focus for us, because a bulk of new users will come from there. And yes, it has implications on revenue as it allows for better and relevant targeting."

He concludes on a positive note, "2018 will see this trend taking off well."