Earlier this year, Disney announced it was planning on making selected Hulu content available within Disney+ in the United States later this year for Hulu subscribers as part of a new one-app experience.
During today’s quarterly financial investors call, Disney CEO Bob Iger briefly spoke about the upcoming merger between the two platforms, comparing it to the success they’ve seen with the Star brand within Disney+ internationally.
We’re deploying the technology necessary to both improve the user experience as well as the economics of this business. We’re harnessing windowing opportunities, perfecting our pricing and marketing strategies, maximizing our enormous advertising potential, and we’re making extensive Hulu content available to bundle subscribers via Disney+. As I announced last quarter, we’re moving closer toward a more unified one-app experience domestically to pair high-quality general entertainment with content from our popular brands and franchises for our bundle subscribers. It’s a formula for success that we have already proven in international markets with our Star offering on Disney+.
Unfortunately, I had hoped we would learn more about the upcoming single-app experience within Disney+, but it looks like it will arrive much later this year.
There will be some limitations on the Hulu content available on Disney+, due to licensing agreements, and it’s likely we won’t see any of the premium add-ons such as Max, Showtime or Starz available, nor the Live functionality.
Internationally, when Disney+ added the Star brand as the sixth tile, it drastically increased engagement from viewers and reduced churn. The Star tile has a huge selection of films and shows from Disney’s studios,including FX, ABC, Searchlight Pictures and 20th Century Studios.
However, Disney did announce it was raising the price of the ad-free tiers of Disney+ and Hulu, but in an effort to encourage more subscribers to take up the dual offering of Hulu and Disney+ together, from September 6th 2023, subscribers in the U.S. will have access to a new ad-free bundled subscription plan featuring Disney+ Premium and Hulu (No Ads) for $19.99/month.
While the ad-supported bundle of Hulu and Disney+ will remain priced at $9.99. Making it much more appealing to get the bundle, either ad-free or with ads, than staying with just one platform and setting the tone for the rest of the year.
Joe Earley, President, Direct-to-Consumer, Disney Entertainment, did reconfirm in a press release that “extensive” content from Hulu would be available in Disney+ in the US later this year:
“The strong momentum of our ad-supported plans in the U.S. demonstrates the importance of providing consumers with choice, flexibility and value. We are excited to expand that offering in more markets across the globe, including in Europe and Canada, and to launch a new premium duo bundle of ad-free Disney+ and Hulu this Fall, as we take steps toward making extensive Hulu content available via Disney+ later this year for Bundle subscribers.”
Here’s a guide to the new prices in the US:
With Ads (No Change)
With Ads (No Change)
Disney+ (With Ads) Add-On (No Change)
ESPN+ on Hulu Add-On*
UFC PPV (standalone) (No Change)
$79.99 (per event)
UFC PPV + Annual*
Duo Premium: Disney+ (No Ads), Hulu (No Ads)^ – *NEW*
Duo Basic: Disney+ (With Ads), Hulu (With Ads) (No Change)
Trio Premium: Disney+ (No Ads), Hulu (No Ads), ESPN+ (With Ads)
Roger has been a Disney fan since he was a kid and this interest has grown over the years. He has visited Disney Parks around the globe and has a vast collection of Disney movies and collectibles. He is the owner of What's On Disney Plus & DisKingdom.