Opinion: Disney+ with Ads pricing disappoints
Disney unveiled upcoming price changes to its streaming service Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN this week. The company announced plans to increase the price of a Disney+ subscription by $3 to $10.99 per month in the United States.
The much awaited Disney+ with Ads plan will be available for $7.99 per month.
Starting December 8, 2022, Disney+ subscribers in the United States will have to pay an extra $3 per month to watch the streaming service's content without ads; this is a price increase of 38%.
Subscriptions for Hulu, which is also owned by Disney, will increase by $2 per month starting October 10, 2022.Subscribers have to pay $14.99 instead of $12.99 from that month onward. Hulu with ads pricing is raised from $6.99 per month to $7.99 per month. Last month, Disney announced that ESPN+ subscriptions would increase to $9.99 per month.
Disney's streaming services operate at a loss at the moment. Combined, Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+ accumulated a loss of $1.1 billion in the fiscal third quarter, even though subscriber numbers continued to grow.
Disney has yet to announce Disney+ with ads pricing for other regions the service is offered in. Judging from the US price of subscription, it is likely that the price of Disney+ with ads will be about the same in other regions.
Disney revealed earlier this year that it plans to run about 4 minutes of ads per hour.
Disney+ with ads price disappoints
The new Disney+ with ads price is the same as the old price without ads. That alone does not sound like a particularly good deal for subscribers who have hoped that the ad-powered version of Disney+ would give them a bigger discount.
The $3 price increase for the ad-free version of Disney+ makes the service more expensive than Netflix's basic plan, which is available for $9.99 in the United States. It is still $9 cheaper than Netflix's Premium plan, that is offering Ultra HD streams.
Subscribers from the United States have an edge over subscribers from many other regions Disney streaming services are offered in. Disney announced subscription bundles for customers who want to subscribe to more than one service.
The two basic plans, with ads, give customers access to Disney+ and Hulu for $9.99 per month, and to Disney#, Hulu and ESPN+ for $12.99 per month.
Disney is not the only streaming provider that announced price increases in the past couple of months. Amazon announced that it plans to increase the price of Amazon Prime in several European countries.
My advise that I published back then still stands: subscribe to one or two months per year only, and not for the entire year. Doing so, you are still able to watch all of the provided content, albeit only during the subscription period. While that may mean a delay before you may watch a show or movie, it saves you a lot of money.
Now You: what is your take on the ad-powered subscription plans? Will you make use of them?Advertisement