Are you a Jio user? Are you a cricket fan? If you are an Indian, you probably said yes to both these questions, in which case, there is good news for you. Jio has signed a partnership with Hotstar to provide India-cricket content to all Jio users on the JioTV platform. The five-year partnership aims to redefine cricket viewership and engagement, by making cricketing content available via internet and interactivity on mobile.
Jio, the mobile data network giant, announced a five-year partnership with India’s leading broadcaster, Star India to start a venture in sports entertainment. Jio and Star will make all televised India-cricket matches available to users of JioTV and Hotstar in India. Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) signed an agreement with Star India Pvt Ltd.
Akash Ambani, Director of Jio said that, “Jio continues to bring the most exclusive content to its users, this time around through the JioTV app. Cricket is not just played, it’s worshipped in India. Every Indian must have access to the best sporting events as well as quality and affordable bandwidth to consume the content. With this partnership, we intend to address both these objectives of providing the best sporting content with the best digital infrastructure to Jio users. Jio promises to and will continue to bring a superlative customer experience in the areas of sports, AR, VR, immersive viewing and more in the coming days.”
This is the first time that cricket production, a streaming platform, and a high-speed data network has come together to deliver cricketing content with connectivity to benefit the Indian consumer. The partnership will cover T20, One Day Internationals (ODI), International Test Cricket, and Premier Domestic Competitions of the BCCI.
“Over the last five years, we have re-invented the sports experience in India across screens, both television and digital. Indian cricket under BCCI is one of the most compelling properties in the world and we are excited to apply the same lens of innovation and re-invention to the property that we have applied to other sports in the last few years. And, with a new partner in Reliance Jio, we will have even more opportunities to raise the bar for cricket fans,” said Sanjay Gupta, Managing Director of Star India.
Jio prime users can use the service for free, but Hotstar customers will have to buy a premier membership, the cost for which is INR 199 per month or INR 999 per year.
This deal enables Jio to telecast cricket content on its platform, a feat it failed to accomplish, when it couldn’t obtain the TV broadcast and digital rights for all international and domestic cricket played in India. In the auction that was held in April, Jio was outbid by Star India and Sony, who secured these media rights for the staggering amount of INR 6,138.1 crore for five years.