Netflix is trailing Hotstar and Amazon Prime Video in India, an area the Netflix has pinpointed as a key for future growth, new mobile usage data provided by SimilarWeb exclusively to Business Insider suggests. But early signs show Netflix's new mobile-only tier could help it catch up.
The estimated number of daily active users on the Netflix app in India fell 4% year-over-year during the third quarter, the SimilarWeb data showed.
SimilarWeb estimates average daily active users and other activity on apps and websites, such as the share of users who open the Netflix app each day, through a panel of hundreds of millions of Android phones and tablets globally. It tracks mobile usage of the Netflix app in 30 international regions, including India, Brazil, the UK, and Malaysia, where it has a sample size that makes up a statistically significant portion of the local device population.
While the data from SimilarWeb doesn't capture Netflix's full footprint, it does give some insights into what is happening in some of Netflix's most important international markets.
A deeper look at Netflix usage in India shows that the share of users opening the mobile app daily — a measure of Netflix's most loyal subscribers — is far less than apps from local rival Hotstar and global competitor Amazon Prime Video.
But Netflix's open rate started to improve in July and August, after it introduced a cheaper mobile-only plan that was more in line with what Hotstar and Amazon were charging.
"It's looking positive in India," Ed Lavery, manager of SimilarWeb's investment solutions business, told Business Insider. He cautioned that it's too early to tell if the trend will continue.