Earlier today, we published a story about how Apple TV+ is having a bit of a rough launch after researched shows that fewer than 10% of the people that qualified for a free streaming account took advantage of the deal. Add to that, the myriad other issues that have plagued the tech company’s less-than-stellar start, and the narrative is beginning to take shape that Apple is struggling. Now, what about the other major streaming service that launched last November — Disney+? How is the Mouse House doing after the launch of its service?
As part of today’s quarterly earnings conference call, Disney revealed (via Variety) that 26.5 million folks have subscribed to the company’s streaming service since its launch last November. Obviously, this number pales in comparison to the more than 160 million accounts that Netflix touts and the more than 100 million Prime members over at Amazon. But for a brand-new service, this seems like a pretty decent three-month number.
It’s been a while since Disney updated its subscriber count for Disney+. After the massive launch, which had various tech issues, the studio openly shared that more than 10 million people signed up for an account during the first week. Of course, we’re not sure how many of those 10 million the studio was able to retain after the users’ free trial periods ended, but it’s clear that a lot of people stuck around to see what Disney’s streaming platform had to offer.
Much of the excitement surrounding Disney+ relied on the release of the live-action “Star Wars” series titled “The Mandalorian.” Everyone expected that series to be a huge hit, just based on the franchise name, but no one expected it to take on such cultural momentum thanks to the introduction of Baby Yoda. However, that series has wrapped up, with the second season in the works but not dated. In addition, the first series from Marvel Studios isn’t expected to launch until August, leaving Disney+ without huge debut to promote for the foreseeable future.
In the meantime, Disney+ has been promoting the extensive library of hit animated films and recent blockbusters such as “Avengers: Endgame,” “Toy Story 4,” and “The Lion King” remake. Outside of that, there are some original series and films being released semi-consistently, but nothing that will likely jazz up subscriber numbers.
TL;DR — Disney has a lot of folks paying for Disney+. The studio has experienced a fairly successful launch over the last three months. But the Mouse House is not yet ready to become the Netflix killer that many are expecting it to be. That’s going to take a lot more time.