DISNEY has confirmed the release date for its Disney+ streaming service in the UK, challenging existing popular video on-demand offerings from the likes of Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, as well as satellite broadcaster Sky TV, which currently offers much of Disney’s movies and TV shows.
Disney is bringing its new streaming service, known as Disney+, to the UK on March 31, 2020. That’s quite a hefty wait given the video on-demand service will make its debut in the United States next week, on November 12.
If you’ve been living under a rock and are unaware of the newest streaming service on the block, Disney+ is a colossal push from Disney to oust the likes of Amazon Prime, Apple TV+ and Netflix. The feverishly-anticipated subscription service will leverage the heft of Disney’s media empire to bring a slew of new original shows and films centred around its existing portfolio properties, including the likes of Star Wars, Pixar, Marvel, and National Geographic.
As well as new TV seasons and movies you won’t find anywhere else, Disney+ will also be the exclusive home for a number of properties from the back catalogue, including The Avengers films, The Simpsons, and its classic animated and live-action remakes, like The Lion King.
In the United States, Disney has already started to pull its content, including Marvel movies like The Avengers, from Netflix and other services to ensure that Disney+ is the one place to watch going forward. It’s unclear how this will work in the UK, where Sky TV broadcasts a number of films and shows. In fact, it even has a dedicated Sky Cinema Disney channel.
Along with the UK, Disney CEO Bob Iger says the service will also launch in Germany, France, Italy, and Spain on the same day. Disney+ is already available in the Netherlands, where it launched as a free pilot scheme back in September, before making its big entrance in the USA.
The Disney CEO kept shtum about exactly how much UK and European viewers can expect to pay for the streaming service. In the United States, Disney charges $6.99 a month. In the Netherlands, the price is set at €6.99 a month.
As such, we wouldn’t be surprised to see a £6.99 a month price tag on the UK version of the service, although this could change depending on whether Disney is able to offer the same catalogue of content as it can in other markets (the expiry date on the current deal with Sky might mean that some of the back catalogue isn’t available at launch, for example).
When it does launch in the UK, a Disney+ streaming app will be available on a bevy of different hardware, including Amazon Fire TV, LG and Samsung-branded Smart TVs, Roku-branded dongles and streaming set-top boxes, Apple TV, iOS, Android, Xbox One, and PS4.
It comes as Netflix has confirmed plans to pull its streaming app from a number of popular Smart TVs.