HiPi short video platform was launched inside the Zee5 app last year. Earlier in June 2021, HiPi has been launched as a standalone app on Google Play store for Android users. With HiPi, the aim is to provide content creators with multiple avenues to earn from content creation and more. Rohit Chadda, CEO for the digital business at Zee group, shares insights on the success of HiPi and the way forward for the short video platform. Also Read - ZEE onboards over 500+ tech aficionados at its digital hub in Bengaluru
• How did you come up with the idea of launching HiPi and what were the challenges you faced?
At Zee, we are always looking for new ways and avenues to bring the best of entertainment to our viewers. Being a leader in broadcast and OTT, the next natural progression for us was to bring variety of entertainment on the fingertips of our consumers through user generated short videos. Also Read - ZEE Entertainment appoints Nitin Mittal as President – Technology & Data
We launched our UGC short video platform HiPi last year within the ZEE5 app ecosystem in order to capitalize the reach of our OTT platform. This helped us understand user behavior and consumption patterns towards short videos and how they differ from long form video. Now with a successful POC under our belt and strong consumer insights, we have launched the standalone mobile app for HiPi. In the next few months, users will witness the growth of the HiPi ecosystem with new forms of monetization as well as content. Also Read - Zee Digital Sets New Scales of Success under Rohit Chadda’s Leadership
• How does HiPi work?
HiPi is a short video platform that provides a complete video creation ecosystem to its creators. You can participate in challenges, play around with filters and effects, showcase your talent and amass fandom. We have a strong AI powered recommendation engine that allows viewers to explore entertaining, fun videos of their liking. With really cool, fun filters effects, its creator module and a comprehensive music library, HiPi lowers the entry barrier for viewers to become creators and eventually stars.
• What is the one thing that sets you apart from your competitors?
HiPi is an app that bridges the gap between fandom and stardom. The current platforms allow only so much popularity for creators and in fact limits them to just brand collabs & monetisation. HiPi can do all this and much more. With the legacy and competencies of Zee, HiPi is the only platform that will help its creators become nationwide stars. Our IP, HiPi Star Hunt, provides an audition platform that aspiring actors from the remotest of Indian cities can leverage to become the next Bollywood’s star.
This is just one of the strong differentiators HiPi provides to its users. We have lot of exciting monetization opportunities coming up that will change the ecosystem in the coming months.
• How has a ban on Chinese mobile applications impacted your business?
The ban of Chinese apps has provided an opportunity to the homegrown platforms to capitalize on the boom of short videos platforms in India. Unfortunately, it has also led to a plethora of clone apps who are just crawling content without giving genuine creators the opportunity to grow.
With Chinese app ban, competition has definitely gone up, with new apps being launched almost every day. But having more competition is always exciting, as there’s more to prove and more value for the end consumer. At HiPi, we strongly believe in being innovative and providing real value to consumers than just being all glitz and glam.
• Going forward, what will be your major focus areas? What are your expansion plans?
With HiPi, we are ready to be the next destination for all things fun, at the tap of your mobile screen. We are working towards making HiPi a true social media platform where you can interact with creators as well as your friends and make it your own.
We have lot of exciting plans for both HiPi users – viewers as well as creators. From a viewer perspective, users can expect new forms of content as well as new engagement opportunities with the content – something that they haven’t seen before on any other short video platform.
From a creator perspective, we know that reach is what all creators crave for that is what we want to give them. We want our creators to benefit from the reach of our entire network. This shall enable them to reach our 600 million broadcast viewers and 300 million digital users. Further, lack of monetization opportunities is another gap in the influencer marketing eco-system. The HiPi ecosystem will provide them with multiple avenues to earn from content creation.