The story starts after gulf war when Indian satellite TV market was born with Star TV… SUN TV was the first “regional language” channel to be launched. Since then it has managed to innovate and hence dominate the Tamil psyche… The Telugu, Malayalam & Kannada channels followed soon. The speakers of languages like Marathi, Gujarati, Bengali, Oriya and Punjabi were already exposed to Hindi channels. When channels in these languages final appeared at the turn of the century, their content was not as glitzy as the Hindi channels leading to poor viewership numbers. It is only in the last 3 years that quality of content in the Marathi & Bengali channels has improved drastically. Given the current trend, the share of revenue of the Marathi & Bengali channels is sure to improve over the next 4-5 years. 3M is surprised that the DNA report fails to speak about Gujarati, Punjabi & Oriya channels!
BTW Karnatique has given the “Languages ordered by decreasing order of speaker population” which is wrong… the correct order is Bengali, Telugu, Marathi, Tamil, Gujarati, Kannada, Malayalam, Oriya & Punjabi.