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Disney+ streaming service rolls out in US: Will it be bundled with Hotstar in India?

Disney Plus, the premium streaming service from The Walt Disney company, has now officially rolled out in the US markets, starting at $6.99 per month. In India, Hotstar has indicated it will be bringing Disney+ content soon.

By: Tech Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: November 13, 2019 4:02:37 pm
Disney Plus, Disney Plus India, Disney Plus cost in India, Disney Plus India launch date, Disney Plus streaming service, Disney Plus content Disney+ streaming service rolls out: Here’s what it offers, what to expect with regard to India. (Image source: Bloomberg)

Disney Plus, the premium streaming service from The Walt Disney company, has now officially rolled out in the US markets, starting at $6.99 per month. However, it is not clear when Disney+ will be coming to India. It was earlier rumoured that Hotstar would be bringing the streaming service to India, and a series of tweets put out by Hotstar Helps account, also indicates this. Some of the ‘Disney’ exclusive content is already on Hotstar premium.

The Hotstar account has tweeted to several customers saying, “Hi, We are working on bringing Disney+ to India. The launch date is yet to be announced; stay tuned. Thank you!” There’s no word on Disney+ prices in India, and whether it will cost extra with Hotstar, which currently starts at Rs 999 for the year, and the monthly scheme costs Rs 299.

What is Disney+ streaming service?

Disney+ streaming service from The Walt Disney Company will feature nearly nearly 500 films and 7,500 TV episodes of television from the Disney universe. Like other streaming services, Disney+ service will have its own originals, exclusive to the domain. Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic content will be exclusive to the service.

One of the most talked about the originals for Disney+ is The Mandalorian, which is the first-ever live-action Star Wars series. Subscribers will have access to four concurrent streams, unlimited downloads on up to 10 devices. It will support setting up of seven different profiles. Parents will also be able to set up Kids Profiles to ensure age appropriate content for children.

What will Disney+ cost in India ?

Disney+ has a fee of $6.99, which on conversion is Rs 502. For consumers in the US, there’s also a Disney bundle featuring Disney with Hulu (with ads) and ESPN+ for $12.99 per month. Regarding the India launch, Disney has not officially confirmed any date.

However, a report on BGR says the service could cost Rs 590 per month in India when it launches, and this is based on accessing the service via VPN. Still, the official India price has not been announced, so all of this would be speculation.

Given Hotstar has indicated that Disney+ will be coming to India, it could be bundled into the existing cost. Hotstar is owned by Star Networks, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Walt Disney company.

It remains to be seen if Hotstar will offer Disney+ at extra cost or whether the service will be included at existing prices, which would be a steal given the kind of exclusive content that Disney has under its control.

Disney Plus, Disney Plus India, Disney Plus cost in India, Disney Plus India launch date, Disney Plus streaming service, Disney Plus content Currently, the Disney Plus website for India only shows an option to ask for updates.

Where is Disney+ launching now?

Disney+ is launching in US, Canada and the Netherlands for now. The service  launches in Australia, New Zealand and Puerto Rico on November 19. Disney+ will launch in markets across Western Europe—including the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and a number of other countries in the region—on March 31, 2020, according to the company.

Where can Disney+ service be accessed?

The Disney+ service can be accessed via the web on DisneyPlus.com. The apps are also available on iOS, and Apple TV, Android, Google Chromecast, Android TV devices. LG Smart TVs with webOS manufactured from 2016 to 2019 will also support Disney+.

Microsoft (Xbox One), Samsung Smart TVs,  all Android based Sony TVs and PlayStation 4 and Roku streaming devices will get the services. Amazon’s Fire TV devices, including the Fire TV Stick will eventually support Disney+. But the availability will depend on the region.

Disney Plus, Disney Plus India, Disney Plus cost in India, Disney Plus India launch date, Disney Plus streaming service, Disney Plus content Disney Plus had a rough start with many users complaining that they were unable to access it. (Image source: Reuters)

What is the content on Disney+ ?

The highlight will be movies like the Avengers: Endgame, Avatar and Star Wars: The Force Awakens, all part of the Disney franchise. The Simpsons will also be on the service. The entire Avengers line up will also be available for viewing, which includes Captain America: Civil War, Guardians of the Galaxy, The Avengers, Iron Man 3, Doctor Strange, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Captain Marvel, Iron Man, Thor: The Dark World, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Iron Man 2, Thor, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Captain America: The First Avenger and Ant-Man. As pointed out, Hotstar in India already has many of these movies.

All six of the original classic Star Wars films released between 1977–1999, the new Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story are also present. By the end of 2020, the entire Skywalker saga will be available on the service. It also looks like the Star Wars films will be made available in 4K Ultra HD resolution.

For Disney kids, the service will have shows like The Suite Life of Zack & Cody, Kim Possible, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, PJ Masks, etc. Pixar movies such as Wall-E, Up, Monsters, Inc., Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Toy Story, Inside Out and Brave will be part of the service. Disney+ will also include more than 400 hours of content from National Geographic.

Disney+ also has new titles in the works including an untitled Obi-Wan Kenobi series, more live-action series from Marvel Studios, which will star characters like The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, WandaVision, Loki, Hawkeye, Ms Marvel, Moon Knight and She-Hulk.

Disney’s animated classics like Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Beauty and the Beast, Pinocchio, Bambi, The Lion King, Lady and the Tramp, Peter Pan, The Little Mermaid, Cinderella are also present.

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