Disney beats rival Netflix on streaming subscribers, announces higher prices
Disney reported having 221.1 million streaming customers with the addition of Hulu and ESPN+, whereas Netflix reported having 220.7 million subscribers at the end of the June quarter.
Walt Disney Co. (DIS.N) announced it will raise fees for consumers who want to watch Disney+ or Hulu without ads after surpassing Netflix Inc. (NFLX.O) with a total of 221 million streaming subscribers.
When the media giant starts to offer a new option that includes ads at the existing price in December, it will increase the monthly cost of Disney+ without advertising by 38% to $10.99.
Early in 2017, as viewers shifted away from traditional cable and broadcast television to internet viewing, Disney bet its future on developing a streaming service to compete with Netflix.
With the release of the “Star Wars” series “Obi-Wan Kenobi” and the Marvel film “Ms Marvel,” Disney has surpassed Netflix in terms of total streaming subscribers in just five years. It has also added 14.4 million Disney+ subscribers, exceeding the consensus expectation of 10 million analysts surveyed by FactSet.
From December 8, Disney will offer an ad-supported version for $7.99 per month, the same price it currently charges for the ad-free edition, in an effort to draw in new users. Depending on the plan, Hulu’s prices will increase from $1 to $2 per month in December.