For years we have heard that Swedish gamer Felix “PewDiePie” Kjellberg has the largest channel on Youtube. He still has the highest number of subscribers by far, but there is reason to argue that he has been dethroned by a person you’ve probably never heard of – Gulshan Kumar. Kumar is the founder of an Indian music company called T-Series which also produces and distributes movies. T-Series is now India’s largest music label and movie studio (according to themselves).
T-Series has a Youtube channel that currently is the 4th most subscribed channel. With 27.4 million subscribers, it is still a long way from beating PewDiePie’s 57 million. But then again, a subscriber is what might be characterized as a vanity metric, which means that it’s a number that does not really add value to your business in itself. Sure, without subscribers it is much harder to reach an audience, so they are not at all meaningless, rather it’s a means to an end.
Even more interesting is looking at for example number of views of a channel, because that is actually a source of income for a youtuber. In other words, it is more important to get views than subscribers.
The T-Series Youtube-channel is the most viewed on the entire network with a total of 25.6 billion video views. The second most viewed channel is WWE, World Wrestling Entertainment, with 17.9 billion views. PewDiePie is third with 16.3 billion views. That should by definition make the Indian company the largest Youtube channel.
If we look at the number of daily or monthly views to each channel, it is even more striking how much more popular T-Series is compared to the other channels. T-Series has about 46 million daily views compared to PewDiePie’s 6 million daily views (last two weeks):
Total views, last 30 days:
T-Series – 1.4 billion
WWE – 570 million
PewDiePie – 182 million
Estimated monthly earnings (estimates by Socialblade):
T-Series – 348K-5.6M USD
WWE – 142K-2.3M USD
PewDiePie – 46K-730K USD
T-Series get almost ten times as many video views per months as PewDiePie. And there are probably two main reasons to the success of T-Series on Youtube, apart from the quality of the content of course.
First of all, the channel publishes a large amount of videos and now has more than 11,000 videos. So they have a lot of content! Here is one example:
The second reason is that Indian audiences prefer to use Youtube for music and Facebook for news, according to a new study.
“Undoubtedly, Youtube is India’s default music player and the most popular source for accessing music content,” Subrat Kar, CEO at Vidooly Media Tech — a Video Intelligence platform, said in a statement.
With a userbase of over 400 million in India, Youtube is the biggest platform for video content, according to Indian Express. Further evidence of Youtube’s popularity in India is that there are at least two more Indian music channels with more than 11 billion channel views: SET India and Zee TV. That places them too near the top of the list.
It is quite possible that Youtube’s charts will be dominated by Indian music companies in a not too distant future.