HEXUS reported upon the announcement of the impending launch of Disney+ back in Spring. It finally went live in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and the Netherlands last month. The service covers streaming content from brands such as Disney (of course), Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and National Geographic - as well as a helping of Fox content.
Disney+ was expected to do well, with an estimated 20m or more subscribers targeted worldwide for 2020. However, based upon research undertaken by Wall Street analysts Cowen & Co., Disney+ has already surpassed that milestone figure in the US alone.
A census-weighted survey of 2,500 US consumers last month pointed at a 21 per cent take-up of the service amongst US households. Variety reports that this suggests that there will be a 24 million Disney+ user base in the US by now.
The above is marks an impressive start, if true. Of course with a population whose eye-balls are already saturated by on-demand entertainment options such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, YouTube, and Fortnite - the growth of Disney+ means that some will bail out of other options. It is noted that one of the big reasons for Disney+'s impressive start is a Verizon promotion in the US providing it for free for a year for customers of the mobile network. It is estimated the Verizon 'freeloaders' make up about a third of the US users, about 8 million of them. Another interesting estimate is that there is an 80 per cent overlap in users with both Disney+ and Netflix subscriptions.
Cowen & Co reckons Disney+'s success will have cost Netflix an additional million subscribers in Q4 2019. That million expands Netflix's churn figure to 5.1m in the US expected during the quarter. Netflix is currently reassuring investors that it has a long track record of dominance in the streaming wars and while US adoption may have slowed it has seen strong growth and upside potential in Asia-Pacific countries.
The UK's Disney+ landing page
In the US, Disney+ costs $6.99 per month and $69.99 per year. There is a $1 discount on the monthly fee if you have a subscription to Hulu and ESPN+. The service will launch in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain on 31st March 2020. Pricing and content will vary by territory.