With Netflix, Amazon and Hulu fighting for audiences streaming attention, there’s never been a better time to dive into the huge back catalogue of films and television series. That balance may be about to shift though, as industry insiders have reported that Disney are about to launch their own dedicated streaming service – effectively robbing Netflix of their Disney movies.
Both CNBC and The Wrap are reporting rumours that Disney is looking to join Netflix as a streaming service – effectively ending its presence on the hugely popular streaming service. The service Disney would replace this with reportedly will be in place for 2019 – with an ESPN variant set to launch in 2018.
Bob Iger, Disney’s CEO, effectively spelt this out when he released a statement laying out the intentions;
“Today we announced a strategic shift in the way we distribute our content. The media landscape is increasingly defined by direct relationships between content creators and consumers, and our control of BAMTech’s full array of innovative technology will give us the power to forge those connections, along with the flexibility to quickly adapt to shifts in the market. This acquisition and the launch of our direct-to-consumer services mark an entirely new growth strategy for the Company, one that takes advantage of the incredible opportunity that changing technology provides us to leverage the strength of our great brands.”
It also raises the prospect of Disney pulling all of its content from other streaming platforms, including Star Wars and its huge library of Marvel movies. Right now they’re only talking about ESPN streaming – but it’s a small step to making that a movie service too.
It’s unclear how this move would go down with users of these services. On the one hand, subscription charges are tiny – meaning the cost of subscribing to a new service isn’t all that high. Disney also has one of the richest back catalogues when it comes to movies – giving them a huge advantage when thinking about doing this. On the other hand though, audience like having all their movies in one place. THe idea of paying more to get the same services isn’t an appealing one – meaning the fight for users will be hugely fierce, should this happen.
We certainly don’t doubt Disney’s ability to do this, it remains to be seen how users will take to it.
Would you check out a dedicated Disney streaming service?