Disney Plus: The Rundown

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            Disney+, first announced in September 2017, was released November 12, 2019. You can try the service for free for a week; if you decide to subscribe, you’ll either pay $7 per month or $70 for a full year of access. Created to rival giants like Netflix and Hulu, Disney+ sets itself apart through its high volume of high profile, exclusive content. Programming is ad-free, however there are banner ads on the login page. In addition to Disney+, Disney owns Hulu and ESPN+. You can buy access to all three services in a bundle for $13 per month, which is $5 cheaper than subscribing to the 3 services individually.

            Morgan Stanley projects that the service could have 13 million subscribers by the end of 2020 and over 130 million by 2024. While these projections are promising, you’re probably more concerned with Disney+’s actual performance so far. Over 10 million subscribers signed up for Disney+ on the day it was launched. The Disney+ mobile app was downloaded 3.2 million times the same day. Over that 24-hour period, users collectively spent 1.3 million hours streaming their Disney favorites.  A telecom provider provided a chart on what their network looked like the day Disney+ launched; the service accounted for 1% of the traffic on their network, leapfrogging many other services.

            Given its popularity on launch day, it should come as no surprise that network demands were off the charts and users experienced issues as a result. Thousands of people were unable to stream Disney+ content as the network began to buckle under the enormous demand. With this level of interest in the service, we need more bandwidth – and we need it quickly. Those who could access the service, though, had mostly positive reviews, and Netflix and other streaming services should take Disney+ very seriously as a competitor.

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