Disney+ just passed an impressive milestone: 100 million paid subscribers worldwide.
In comparison, Netflix has just over 200 million subscribers. Disney+ launched in November 2019, so it has been around for roughly a year and a half now. In that short period of time, Disney has managed to narrow the gap between the two streaming services rapidly.
Speaking at an annual shareholders meeting, Disney CEO Bob Chapek indicated that the milestone has “inspired us to be even more ambitious.”
From a numbers and content standpoint, that increased ambition is a new “target of 100+ titles per year,” said Chapek. “This includes Disney Animation, Disney Live Action, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic. Our direct-to-consumer business is the company’s top priority, and our robust pipeline of content will continue to fuel its growth.”
That 100 million subscriber base is a staggering number, though it should also be pointed out that actual viewer numbers may be higher given the wider popularity Disney+ – like all streaming services – has shared logins among friends. Regardless, Disney+ obviously enjoyed a strong launch and has had the benefit of an ever-growing and stronger base of content, including last year’s feather-in-the-cap get of Hamilton. On other fronts, Disney+ is increasingly synonymous with The Mandalorian, WandaVision, and anticipation is high for the next MCU show, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier.
Of course, part of the reason why Disney+ is doing so well is due to the pandemic. People are staying home and streaming more content. Basically, Disney unintentionally chose just about the best time to launch a streaming service. But that has benefitted Netflix too, so it’s only part of the story here.