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Should you subscribe to ALT Balaji?

To help you make an informed decision, here’s our review of ALT Balaji.

Swetha S Rao
Jun 06, 2021
 
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ALT Balaji is an owned subsidiary of Balaji Telefilms Ltd. It launched in 2017 as a subscription based video on demand platform. It has around 34 million paid users.

Platforms Supported: Android, iOS and Desktop

Download and Onboarding experience: The size of the Android app is 15 MB and the download experience was smooth. There was no onboarding glitch.

Subscription Plan:

The subscription plans for ALT Balaji are as follows:

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What to expect:

ALT Balaji has the following sections:

  • Home
  • Shows
  • Movies
  • Comedy
  • Music Videos

The “Home” section has a widget that shows the latest releases and is also divided in to 12 widgets some of which are :

  • Trending
  • Drama
  • Romantic Stories
  • Youth
  • Supernaturals & thrillers
  • Crazy comedies
  • Originals
  • Movies

The “Shows” , “Movies” ,”Comedy” and “Music Videos” sections have a widget and a list of all shows.

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Design and experience:

The design is simple and not cluttered .The platform is divided into various widgets on the home page. This makes it easier for a user to search for content from the widget of their choice. On the other pages there is a carousel, followed by a list of movies , shows and music videos.

The Movie Detail Page has the following elements:

  • Backdrop image
  • Runtime
  • Certification
  • Genre
  • Language
  • Year of release
  • Cast
  • Crew
  • Synopsis
  • Trailer
  • Related movies
  • Chromecast
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The show Detail Page has the following elements:

  • Backdrop image
  • Certification
  • Genre
  • Language
  • Year of release
  • Cast
  • Crew
  • Synopsis
  • Trailer
  • Episodes
  • Chromecast
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The Music Video Detail Page has the following elements:

  • Backdrop image
  • Certification
  • Genre
  • Language
  • Year of release
  • Cast
  • Crew
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Recommendation Engine:

The platform doesn’t account for the users’ preferences and there is no recommendation engine to suggest any movies, shows or songs to a user based on their preference or watching history.

Search:

  1. Shows the popular searches on the platform
  2. Results match the keyword typed . Even if there are spelling mistakes it gives the matching results which are almost accurate.
  3. The user can search for shows , movies or genre. 
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Sign in/Sign up:

One can sign in or sign up at any point using:

  • Phone number and OTP
  • Email and Password
  • Facebook
  • Apple Sign in
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Pros & Cons:

Pros

  1. The home page is divided into widgets which make it easier for users to find content of their choice
  2. There are various subscription tiers that a user can choose from .
  3. The platform allows users to cast the content from their mobile phones to their Chromecast-enabled TV.

Cons

  1. There is no 'See all' option for widgets in the home page. The user needs to scroll which is not a feasible option given the amount of content.
  2. The platform does not show the languages and genres it caters to.
  3. The suggested movies hardly match a particular movie or show. They are very random and do not match the genre of any given title.
  4. The platform does not have the latest movie releases.
  5. The catalogue is not very huge with respect to both movies and shows as most of their shows are their originals.

Suggestion for the platform:

  1. The platform needs to introduce filters for language and genre so that users can choose what they want to watch from the catalogue and are also aware of what all languages the platform has.
  2. They can add IMDb rating to the movie and show the detail page so that users can make an informed decision about selecting a show/movie to watch.
  3. The catalogue needs to be updated with latest releases of movies if they want to attract more users onto their platform.
  4. The similar movies section needs to generate accurate results as now they are very random.

Why should one subscribe?

  1. The platform has various tiers of subscription hence the users are only paying for the duration they wish to have the subscription for.
  2. The OTT has a lot of original content which is very refreshing and is not available on most other OTTs .

Rating:

I would rate the platform 7 out of 10 based on the pros and cons listed out above.

Having an ALT Balaji subscription is recommended for those who want to watch movies and shows in regional languages. It’s for those users who wish to pay for a subscription that would let them watch original content that is not available on other OTTs. The Rs100 for 3 months plan sounds like a good deal as you would be paying only 34 rupees per month .

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