The competition between streaming services will get even more intense later this year, when Disney+ will look to expand its membership — the company claims its goal is to have 230 to 260 million subscribers by 2024 — by introducing a cheaper option that will offer the site’s movies and shows with commercial interruptions.

In a press release, Disney claimed the ad-supported Disney+ option will debut “in late 2022, with plans to expand internationally in 2023.” Kareem Daniel, Chairman, Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution, had this to say about the announcement:

Expanding access to Disney+ to a broader audience at a lower price point is a win for everyone - consumers, advertisers, and our storytellers, More consumers will be able to access our amazing content. Advertisers will be able to reach a wider audience, and our storytellers will be able to share their incredible work with more fans and families.

Disney did not announce how much the ad-supported Disney+ tier will cost, or give an exact launch date for the new offering, Currently, a monthly subscription to just Disney+ is $7.99 a year or $79.99 for an annual subscription. They also offer the service as part of a bundle with Hulu and ESPN+ which costs $14 a month.


Even without a cheaper ad-supported tier, Disney+ is already on the less expensive end of subscription service prices, at least among the major players in that sphere. Netflix raised its prices in January of this year, with a standard plan now costing $15.49 a month. Paramount+ is $9.99 a month, although there is an option for a $4.99 a month plan that doesn’t come with live local CBS and includes limited commercial interruptions.

Streaming with ads seems to be growing in popularity, at least among corporations looking to generate as much revenue as they possibly can. Ad-free HBO Max costs $14.99, but the company recently started its own ad-supported subscription at a significantly discounted price. Peacock is free with ads for anyone who wants to sample their programming; to get full access to their library you have to pay $4.99 a month. Then to get rid of the ads completely you have to bump up your subscription fee to $9.99 a month.

Basically, right now the streaming world is all about a race to collect the most subscribers as humanly possible, and to get as rooted into customers’ monthly buying viewing habits as cable television was for decades. If offering a subscription at a cheaper price with a few ads is the way to do it, that’s what they are going to do.

Sign up for Disney+ here.

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