Disney not considering cheaper, ad-supported Disney+ tier

Posted:
in General Discussion edited June 18
While other streaming services experiment with ad-supported tiers to grow subscriber numbers, Disney is content with keeping its premium Disney+ service a completely for-pay experience.

Disney+


Speaking at the Credit Suisse 23rd Annual Communications Conference, Disney CEO Bob Chapek said the company has no plans to add an ad-supported tier to Disney+ in the near future, reports The Verge.

"We're always reevaluating how we go to market across the world, but we've got no such plans now to do that. We're happy with the models that we've got right now," Chapek said. "We won't limit ourselves and say no to anything. But right now, we have no such plans for that."

Chapek elucidated on Disney's streaming price strategy while answering a line of questioning from Credit Suisse managing director Doug Mitchelson. Of note, Mitchelson said many Disney customers are inured to commercials and ad breaks, coming from the company's cable offerings. While true, the benefit gained by including ads to offset a portion of monthly Disney+ streaming costs would apparently be immaterial at this stage.

The line of thinking was borne out by customer response to Disney's recent price hike from $7 a month to $8. According to Chapek, the change did little to impact subscriber numbers.

"We did launch at a very attractive price-value opening point," Chapek said. "The first price increase that you mentioned in the first 16 months happened recently, and we've seen no significantly higher churn because of that."

Disney is also in the enviable position of operating a popular streaming with a massive content catalog to which new exclusives and originals are continually added. In May, the company reported 103.6 million subscribers at the end of April, just 17 months after the service launched. Initial expectations were set at between 60 to 90 million subscribers by 2024.

Disney's announcement arrives as segment competitors introduce ad-supported models to reel in customers. For example, HBO Max in May turned to ads to cut its monthly rate by $5.

Apple does not provide an ad-supported tier of Apple TV+, though the company has been offering one-year trials to new device buyers. That period was reduced to three months this week.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 15
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 2,527member
    I appreciate that Disney+ doesn't have ANY ads. Whereas Paramount+ shows tend to have a 15 second "promo" for some other program at some point during each episode of each program I watch. And to add insult to injury, the promos are usually for shows that aren't available in my country. Apple also has begun showing "promos" about 30 seconds long at the beginning of many episodes of its shows. Although the Apple ad comes with a SKIP button. I'm going to write a macro on my Mac which monitors for that skip button and auto-presses it. That should be 5 minutes of work. I'm hopeful that I can write this macro using the built-in OCR capabilities of Maverick macOS; right now I'm using a third party product for my OCR code.

    I consider promos to be ads. Therefore Apple and Paramount+ do not have truly ad-free services, in my opinion. True, it's just a single short ad per episode, but it's not ad-free.

    The only thing I didn't like about Disney+ is that watching it in Safari on my iMac always had a multi-gigabyte memory leak, (which didn't happen in Firefox) and required refreshing the browser every 5 minutes to restore my memory, or just using Firefox. But switching to an M1 Mini, I haven't had that happen at all.
    retrogustoStrangeDays
  • Reply 2 of 15
    pichaelpichael Posts: 35member
    Ok. Now it’s time to bring Disney into the courtroom for behaving in a business like manner and wanting to drive a profit. 

    They admit they aren’t doing it in the foreseeable future which therefore means they could do it. 

    The absolute nerve they have. 

    (This is all sarcasm btw, it just feels like the world feels entitled to what they believe they should have for some reason).
    Beats
  • Reply 3 of 15
    dasjettadasjetta Posts: 19member
    That’s OK because I have no interest in supporting a company who panders to communist China and who also treats their domestic employees “cast members” with such disdain. It’s really too bad because I like a lot of their content. Every time they buy up something like Marvel Comics it makes me angry. I’ll watch the movies from Netflix if and when I can get it but I will not knowingly or directly give my money to Disney. 
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 4 of 15
    I'm old enough to remember when the value proposition to cable TV included no advertising. I'm glad I at least have the option of paying to go ad free when suscribing to content though. However, using Apple News as an example, this option is no guarantee. There's a free, limited content tier. Pay for access to more content, but it still has some ads. PLUS constant upselling to the full version of individual publishers. There is endless upselling and ad creep. Its a mess and annoying so I just limit subscriptions to a small handful. I don't even want to see previews/promos of other content when watching someting I paid for.
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 5 of 15
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,480member
    Once you’ve watched all the Marvel, Pixar, Star Wars, Disney stuff you come to the realization that Disney+ actually has very limited content, like the critics of Apple TV+ always caterwaul about. Whatever floats your boat. I keep Disney+ for the grandkids since I’ve been through most of the content years ago when those movies came out.
    cypresstree
  • Reply 6 of 15
    davgregdavgreg Posts: 881member
    The evil empire of Disney ruined Hulu with Live TV and I have no interest in the Disney or comic book stuff.

  • Reply 7 of 15
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,532member
    lkrupp said:
    Once you’ve watched all the Marvel, Pixar, Star Wars, Disney stuff you come to the realization that Disney+ actually has very limited content, like the critics of Apple TV+ always caterwaul about. Whatever floats your boat. I keep Disney+ for the grandkids since I’ve been through most of the content years ago when those movies came out.

    When Apple TV+ launched it was funny seeing people call it a failure and compare Disney’s 100 years of building a catalog to Apple’s days old catalog.

    Apple is always measured by a different metric.
  • Reply 8 of 15
    AniMillAniMill Posts: 32member
    Offering a lower cost, ad supported tier is fine as long as the ad-free versions are also available. What concerns me is the eventual adification of streaming where there won’t be any ad-free tiers, only tears 😢.
  • Reply 9 of 15
    nmcphersnmcphers Posts: 47member
    lkrupp said:
    Once you’ve watched all the Marvel, Pixar, Star Wars, Disney stuff you come to the realization that Disney+ actually has very limited content, like the critics of Apple TV+ always caterwaul about. Whatever floats your boat. I keep Disney+ for the grandkids since I’ve been through most of the content years ago when those movies came out.
    You do know they have shows as well right? The Mandalorian; WandaVision; The Falcon and the Winter Soldier; and Loki are all awesome. 
  • Reply 10 of 15
    AppleishAppleish Posts: 371member
    Good. Gives them less of an excuse to jack up the regular rate.
  • Reply 11 of 15
    pairof9pairof9 Posts: 44member
    Thank goodness...nothing worse than watching Empire Strikes Back at "...no, Luke, I am..." then a Verizon ad pops up.
  • Reply 12 of 15
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 11,597member
    I'm old enough to remember when the value proposition to cable TV included no advertising. I'm glad I at least have the option of paying to go ad free when suscribing to content though. However, using Apple News as an example, this option is no guarantee. There's a free, limited content tier. Pay for access to more content, but it still has some ads. PLUS constant upselling to the full version of individual publishers. There is endless upselling and ad creep. Its a mess and annoying so I just limit subscriptions to a small handful. I don't even want to see previews/promos of other content when watching someting I paid for.
    Yeah that's a hoot. We got scammed lol.
  • Reply 13 of 15
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 11,597member
    pairof9 said:
    Thank goodness...nothing worse than watching Empire Strikes Back at "...no, Luke, I am..." then a Verizon ad pops up.
    Yucks aside, I'm amazed how often this happens during YouTube videos -- right in the middle of a sentence! Google is supposed to be the brightest software engineer minds in the biz, right? And they can't figure out how to space an ad somewhere other than in the middle of a sentence? Simple sound wave analysis would prevent that. 
  • Reply 14 of 15
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,480member
    nmcphers said:
    lkrupp said:
    Once you’ve watched all the Marvel, Pixar, Star Wars, Disney stuff you come to the realization that Disney+ actually has very limited content, like the critics of Apple TV+ always caterwaul about. Whatever floats your boat. I keep Disney+ for the grandkids since I’ve been through most of the content years ago when those movies came out.
    You do know they have shows as well right? The Mandalorian; WandaVision; The Falcon and the Winter Soldier; and Loki are all awesome. 
    Well, so does Apple TV+ but people still claim the minimal subscription price isn’t worth it. But I try to remember that tech blogs are inhabited by a different kind of human being, namely those who do not value quality.
  • Reply 15 of 15
    Hunter13Hunter13 Posts: 14member
    I still don’t understand paying for ads? I tried that with Hulu for a day and had to upgrade, it was torture. 
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