Disney forecast to steal Netflix’s crown as world’s biggest streaming firm

Netflix is forecast to lose its crown as the world’s biggest video streaming provider within three years, amid explosive growth at ディズニー after the launch of its rival on-demand service only 16 months ago.

The Walt Disney Company announced earlier this month that its flagship Disney+ platform, launched in late 2019, had passed 100 million global subscribers – a feat that took its arch-rival, Netflix, a decade to achieve. Taken together with subscriber numbers for the group’s ESPN+ sports platform and Hulu subscription service in the US, the surge puts Disney on track to dethrone Netflix by 2024.

ザ・ Mandalorian-driven success story has smashed the expectations of management, which had conservatively estimated it would take five years to reach 90 million subscribers. 12月中, an emboldened Disney tripled its target to 260 百万 2024 and doubled its content budget to $15bn (£10.8bn), underscoring its position as the third major force in the global streaming wars.

先月, Netflix announced it had 203.7 million subscribers, taking four years to notch up its second hundred million, while Amazon Prime Video – home to series such as Outlander and The Marvelous Mrs Maisel, as well as sport including Premier League football and NFL – is estimated to have about 147 million regular global users.

“Disney+ has obviously experienced some of the fastest growth seen from a subscription video-on-demand service; kudos to them for establishing themselves as a global force so fast,” said Richard Broughton, an analyst at Ampere Analysis. “While Disney+ is still only half the size of Netflix, it has reached that milestone in an unprecedented timescale.”

Ampere said Disney+ would overtake Amazon Prime Video in 2024 to become the world’s second most popular streaming service. Netflix would remain on top until at least 2025, when he forecasts subscriber numbers would hit 247 million and 286 million respectively. しかしながら, taking into account ESPN+ and Hulu, インクルード Walt Disney Company overall would pull ahead of Netflix in two or three years’ time.

The group is forecast to hit 266 million subscribers by the end of 2023, just shy of Netflix on 269 100万. 1年後, the positions will be reversed, with Netflix’s 279 million subscribers trailing Walt Disney’s 295 100万.

With Britons spending 40% of their waking hours in front of the TV during the height of the coronavirus pandemic, streaming services have experienced a boom in popularity. By the end of last year, より多い 32 million Britons had become subscribers to Netflix, Amazon or Disney+, double the number signed up to traditional pay-TV providers such as Sky, BT and Virgin Media.

While Netflix enjoyed a record year on a global scale, the addition of 37 million new subscribers is the most in a single year in its history, Disney+ proved to be the biggest winner in the UK.

Helped by the serendipitous timing of its UK launch – in the week the nation entered the first lockdown in March 2020 – Disney+ hoovered up almost 40% の 13 million new streaming subscribers in the UK last year. Amazon Prime Video took a quarter, while Netflix, the most popular service in the UK, attracted 19%, according to the data firm Kantar.

それに直面して, the level of success Disney+ has achieved could be surprising, given the relatively slim catalogue of content it launched with compared with its rivals. As of January this year, Disney+ offered 4,500 hours of content compared with 40,000 on Netflix and 50,000 on Amazon. Even relative minnows such as BritBox (10,000 時間) and Hayu, home to reality shows such as Below Deck and Keeping up with the Kardashians, (6,000), offered more.

Disney is aware of the need for a steady pipeline of new TV programmes and films in the content arms race to attract and keep subscribers. It has a target of adding more than 100 new titles to the service each year. 加えて, it launched a global companion streaming service, Star, last month – doubling the amount of content it offers with programmes designed to appeal to a wider non-Disney audience, such as Lost, Desperate Housewives, 24 and The X-Files.

“It is about quality over quantity,” Broughton said. “The others have volume, Disney relies on the quality of its brands. It has shows and films that people, ファン, feel they must watch.”