We all, including Disney CEO Bob Iger, have cited difficulty in earning and retaining subscribers to The Walt Disney Company’s 2019 adventure known as Disney+.
To compete with streaming giants like Netflix, and on the heels of finally purchasing all remaining shares of Hulu in the final quarter of the year, Disney’s streaming service is seeing an uptick, solidifying itself as a go-to streaming source for consumers.
After what has seemed like a see-saw of performance, Bob Iger just let slip that streaming service has experienced a boom in growth of subscribers in their latest quarter.
Citing titles such as Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 (2023), Ahsoka, and The Little Mermaid (2023), the Disney-owned streaming service that’s home to acquired and original content has demolished expectations recently, adding 7 million new subscribers.
Disney’s streaming service, which has seen a downfall in subs as fans move away from Star Wars and Marvel content, seemed to face a questionable future, with some, including myself, questioning Disney’s ability to retain the platform as a current business model.
However, in true Disney fashion, as the clock strikes midnight and the year ends, Disney+ boasts one of its strongest-performing quarters yet. Iger, who spoke heavily regarding Disney’s approach to the streaming market during the third quarter earnings call, cited current subscriber numbers at a high of 150.2 million.
Interestingly, this performance has passed Wall Street expectations of adding 3 million new subscribers to the service.
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Disney+ has added several new titles over the year; many underperformed at the box office. The Little Mermaid and Elemental (2023) helped The Walt Disney Company smash through their expected subscriber count of around 147 million.
It would seem that, possibly, viewers prefer catching the latest Disney films and shows from the comfort of their living rooms, as opposed to a pricey experience in theatres. Disney’s fourth quarter earnings suggest further expansion and investment for the streaming service, an arm of The Walt Disney Company that executives have been determined to make competitive with others like Netflix.
With a slate of holiday day shows and films, such as The Santa Clauses: Season 2 on the way, it wouldn’t be surprising to see these numbers shoot even higher as the year comes to an end.