Updated March 4 2022:
Well, this rumor turned out to be true. Disney has officially announced that its streaming service will launch a more affordable tier of Disney+ that would feature ads to make it more affordable. This new tier will arrive late in 2022 in the U.S., with international availability in 2023.
“Disney+ will expand its offerings for consumers by introducing an ad-supported subscription in addition to its option without ads, beginning in the U.S. in late 2022, with plans to expand internationally in 2023.”
“Expanding access to Disney+ to a broader audience at a lower price point is a win for everyone - consumers, advertisers, and our storytellers,” said Kareem Daniel, Chairman, Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution. “More consumers will be able to access our amazing content. Advertisers will be able to reach a wider audience, and our storytellers will be able to share their incredible work with more fans and families.”
Source: Business Wire
It seems that Disney is considering a new, cheaper, ad-supported version of its streaming service that would be available in the United States.
According to The Information, a more affordable version of Disney+ may be on the way. This new option would arrive as a more compelling option that would serve as a trampoline to boost subscriber growth. The report claims that Disney’s streaming service had 118 million subscribers back in November, and it has now reached more than 130 million subscribers. However, these numbers aren’t increasing as fast as Disney would want, so this new tier would help the company to achieve its goal of having 230 to 260 million paid subscribers by 2024.
“Disney would be joining the majority of entertainment companies, including WarnerMedia, Discovery, NBCUniversal and Paramount Global, that have launched ad-supported tiers of their streaming services as they seek to grow in the increasingly competitive streaming market. The moves signal how the focus of video streaming has shifted away from ad-free services, like that pioneered by Netflix more than a decade ago, to a more traditional ad-supported television model.”
Other entertainment companies have used the same strategy, like Discovery, NBCUniversal, WarnerMedia, and Paramount have launched ad-supported subscription tiers to make them more compelling to users and offer content at multiple prices points.
Disney+ currently goes for $7.99 per month, or you can pay $79.99 per year, which also helps you save some bucks. However, the new ad-based tier is expected to be more affordable than the current version. There’s no information about the possible new price tag for this service, but you can take Discovery+ and Paramount+ as a starting point. These services are available starting at $4.99 per month, but they come with ads.
If Disney launches this new budget-friendly version of Disney+, it would leave Apple TV+ and Netflix as the only two streaming services that don’t offer a cheaper tier for their streaming content. Disney is also planning to spend at least $8 billion per year on Disney+ by 2024 to improve its service and regularly include excellent content.
Source: The Information