BARC India Shifts to Reporting Pay and Free Platform Data Separately Starting Week 27

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Broadcast Audience Research Council of India (BARC) announced on Monday that they would start reporting viewership data and report for pay and free platforms separately, beginning week 27. This period means June 27 to July 5, 2019. It is worth noting that Broadcast Audience Research Council has been reporting feedback from the industry for better understanding the viewership habits and patterns of TV viewers. It has also reported acute insights and views from industry stakeholders as well to understand the viewership in India better. Now with the change in rules of the Indian broadcasting and DTH industry and a new form being picked up in terms of norms, the publishing of viewership data also required to be slightly changed. As such, BARC has followed suite.

New Feedback to be Available Above Current Rural and Urban Cuts

The new way of reporting the viewership data with Pay and Free platforms will be available over and above the rural and urban cuts which BARC currently reports. BARC has also noted that these reports will be available to all subscribers for planning and analysis through the proprietary BARC Media Workstation Software, and also it will be published on the website for select genres.

It is worth noting that the Free platform which BARC will be reporting about is a kind of subscription of viewers where they do not need to pay a monthly rent every month and instead they have to simply pay a one-time fee for installation of the set-top box. A big player in this game is DD Free Dish. As opposed to a free connection, a Pay connection would be your standard DTH connection where you are required to pay for the services all year long.

Free Connections Amounting to 140 Million Subscribers

The data also denotes that in the Hindi markets, almost 2 out of every 10 subscriptions is a free one which translates to about 140 million TV viewers. Like you would expect, the type of TV connection which the two demographic has divides them into significantly different strata. The Pay and Free TV viewers do not only have different TV connections but also they differ vastly in terms of characteristics, values, lifestyle and psychographics as well. BARC India has also done a study in these homes which differentiates between the profile of the end consumer in these two homes.

BARC India CEO, Partho Dasgupta said, “There has been a strong demand from the Market for separate reporting of viewership from homes with Pay; Free connection. We have taken the market feedback in consideration with the changes that have come about in the ecosystem post the implementation of the Tariff Order. We believe this move is a step in the right direction to empower the industry in understanding the distinct consumption patterns of this segment and plan more effectively.”

The BARC reports which would focus on Pay and Free platforms separately would enable the advertisers to do focused advertising. These advertisers would also be able to make crucial decisions regarding content and distribution as well, thanks to the separate reporting by BARC.

Reported By


Arpit spends his day closely following the telecom and tech industry. A music connoisseur and a night owl, he also takes a deep interest in the Indian technology start-up scene and spends rest of his time spilling poetry and stories on paper.

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