Disney+ announces Netflix-style crackdown on password sharing and a new ad-based streaming option for UK users as it fights to reverse falling profits
- Streaming giant is to launch a new, advert-based streaming option for UK users
- It will cost £4.99 per month, with a standard option at £7.99 and premium £10.99
Disney+ is to follow in the footsteps of rival streaming service Netflix after announcing plans to crackdown on password sharing.
The company is currently battling to reverse falling profits amid a sharp drop in advertising sales and a poor showing at the Box Office for several of its recent films.
CEO Bob Iger said Disney was exploring account sharing for streaming and would provide additional details on how it plans to curb it later this year.
From November, the streaming giant is also looking to launch a new, cheaper option of its service with adverts for UK users.
The plan, which is already available in the US, will also be introduced in Canada and other parts of Europe.
Getting strict: Disney+ is to follow in the footsteps of rival streaming service Netflix after announcing plans to crackdown on password sharing
WHAT ARE THE NEW DISNEY+ PLANS FOR THE UK?
Standard with ads: £4.99 per month
Standard: £7.99 per month
Ability to downloads videos to watch offline
Premium: £10.99 per month
4k video, downloads, and the ability to use the account on up to four different devices at once.
It will charge £4.99 per month for the service in Britain, while some users could see their bills rise by £3 to £10.99 later this year.
There is currently only a single price for Disney+ in the UK, which costs £7.99 per month, but from November the streaming service is introducing three new tiers.
These include the standard package with adverts – at £4.99 per month – and the standard without, which includes the ability to download videos to watch offline.
There will also be a premium option with 4k video, downloads and the ability to use the account on up to four different devices at once.
Currently, all subscribers in the UK get the benefits that will soon only be available to premium users, so by rolling it out Disney+ is effectively increasing the price by £3 per month for those who want to keep their existing feature.
Netflix also introduced a similar advert-based service last year.
This was among a series of updates as the company sought to bolster its flagging subscriber numbers, which began to drop in 2022.
In the US, customers with Disney+ will see their monthly costs for the ad-free service rise by 27 per cent, from $11 to $14.
Despite getting off to a somewhat slow start with a box office debut just under initial projections, The Little Mermaid has neared the $500 million worldwide box office milestone
Disney’s Guardians of the Galaxy and its most recent endeavor, a live action version of The Little Mermaid have failed to meet expectation while two other recent films, Strange World and Lightyear were complete failures
Hulu prices for ad-free will rise by 20 percent, to $18. The lowest-priced plans, Disney+ and Hulu with ads, will remain at $8 a month.
Disney’s results for the third quarter, released yesterday (Wednesday), were mixed.
Revenue at the company grew by 4 per cent year-on-year in the three months ending 1 July, but it posted a loss of $460 million (£361 million), compared to a $1.4 billion profit in the same period last year.
The firm also reported a loss of Disney+ subscribers — down 7.4 per cent on the previous quarter to 146.1 million.
Looking at its wider business, Disney acknowledged that the performance of some recent films such as the new live action Little Mermaid and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 had been ‘disappointing’.
Mr Iger, who recently re-joined the company to help boost growth, said the firm had ‘work to do’.
But he told investors: ‘I’m incredibly confident in Disney’s long-term trajectory.’
WHAT ARE THE VIDEO STREAMING OPTIONS AVAILABLE TO UK CUSTOMERS?
Price: £4.99 a month (with ads) OR £10.99/month for Standard OR £15.99/month for Premium
Price: £8.99 per month OR £95 per year
- Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan
- The Boys
Price: £6.99 a month
- Ted Lasso
- For All Mankind
Price: £7.99 a month OR £79.90 a year
- The Mandalorian
- The Simpsons
Price: From £6.99 a month (6 month) or £9.99 (flexible)
- Game of Thrones
Price: £4.99 a month
- Keeping up with the Kardashians
- Made in Chelsea
Price: £5.99 a month OR £59.99 a year
- Spitting Image
- Midsomer Murders
Prices correct as of May 2023