The Walt Disney Company has announced details of a $12.99 (€11.61) bundle that will provide access to the Disney+, ESPN+ and Hulu streaming services.
The offer is priced at the same level as the most popular Netflix subscription in the US. Disney made the announcement ahead of the much-anticipated launch of Disney+ on November 12.
In April, Disney forecast that ESPN+, which launched last year in the US, would have between eight and 12 million subscribers by the end of the 2024 fiscal year. At the time, Disney said the service had more than two million paying subscribers.
ESPN+ holds rights in the US to Major League Soccer, Italy’s Serie A, the English FA Cup and a host of other properties such as the UFC mixed martial arts promotion. Last month it was reported that the service is close to acquiring rights to Germany’s Bundesliga.
Disney president Bob Iger has previously referred to Disney+, ESPN+ and Hulu as “the three legs of the stool” in terms of the company’s streaming strategy. Deadline reported that the $12.99 bundle would include Hulu’s basic on-demand tier and not its live TV bundle.
A Hulu subscription is currently available for $5.99 a month, while ESPN+ costs $4.99 a month. Disney+ is set to offer 300 film titles and 7,500 episodes of Disney TV series upon launch in November.
Meanwhile, a report from Ofcom, the UK media regulator, has underlined the shift from traditional TV viewership to subscription streaming services.
Ofcom’s ‘Media Nations’ report found that the number of UK households signed up to the most popular streaming platforms – Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Now TV and Disney Life – rose by 47 per cent to 13.3m in 2019.
Yih-Choung Teh, strategy and research group director at Ofcom, said: “The way we watch TV is changing faster than ever before. In the space of seven years, streaming services have grown from nothing to reach nearly half of British homes.”
However, traditional viewing does still account for the most time spend watching content, with viewers watching an average of 3 hours and 12 minutes per day, a year-on-year fall of 11 minutes.