In recent years, more and more people have gradually shifted from basic cable to streaming services, such as Netflix and Hulu, for entertainment. Instead of having to wait a week between each episode like before, viewers now have access to multiple seasons of hundreds of different shows all at once at their fingertips. Many major networks and companies like HBO and Showtime have already followed this new phenomenon by creating their own subscription services, although one in particular has recently garnered a fair amount of attention: Disney+.
Earlier this year, Disney, arguably the most powerful production company right now, announced they would be launching their new streaming service Disney+ worldwide by November. For $7 a month, viewers will have access to a variety of movies and shows from Disney, Marvel, Pixar and more, as well as some original titles exclusive to the service such as the spin-off Marvel TV series Loki, and the Christmas film Noelle.
So far, it is predicted that the streaming service, like virtually all of Disney’s projects, will be tremendously successful. According to CNBC in June of 2019, Morgan Stanley analyst Benjamin Swinburne predicted that Disney+ could have up to 13 million subscribers by the end of next year.
As for how this will affect already existing companies, most notably Netflix, the results of Disney+ will most likely not be so drastic as to completely push any other platform into irrelevancy. In fact, it might even help competing platforms. The entry of a corporation as gigantic as Disney into the streaming competition could potentially increase the viewership across all companies, especially with the company’s $12.99 package that also includes Hulu and ESPN.
However, the upcoming release of Disney+ presents greater pressure for more original content for other services. For example, although some of the most popular content on Netflix are cable shows like “The Office” and “Friends”, a recent study conducted by Variety shows that the company’s top 10 most-viewed shows are all Netflix Originals.
And this increasing demand for original content will most likely tip the scales in Disney’s favor, especially with its massive fanbase.
Most notably, after the movie Avengers: Endgame was released, fans worldwide have been on the edge of their seats in anticipation of Marvel Phase Four. Disney+ took no time to swoop in and take advantage of the sheer number of Marvel fans, already announcing their plans for original MCU series like The Falcon and the Winter Soldier and Ms. Marvel, just to name a few.
Ultimately, Disney+ only presents exciting new entertainment for audiences everywhere. Whether its effect on competing platforms are positive or negative, viewers will be the real ones benefiting from all this new content.
Information comes from Variety and the New York Times.