Disney+ hits 50 million subscriber mark

Disney+ has passed 50 million paid subscribers worldwide, the Walt Disney Company announced Wednesday, April 8, 2020.

The streaming service, which launched Nov. 12, 2019, features a variety of content from under various Disney branded studios and services as well as Star Wars, Marvel, National Geographic, Pixar brands, all of which Disney owns.

Disney notably let most contracts for its content on streamer Netflix leading up to its own launch.

Streaming services are reporting record use during the coronavirus pandemic — and Disney+ launched in eight European countries in the past two weeks: UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria and Switzerland.

The 50 million figure includes subscribers who are not directly paying for the service, such as Verizon subscribers, but still generate revenue for the service.

While subscribers of services such as Verizon that have opted to bundle Disney+ with other service plans don’t directly pay for them, the companies offering the deal typically pay Disney — though likely at a steeply discounted rate.

Disney+ also launched in India last week, being offered alongside its Hotstar service with content available in Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.

In its announcement, Disney says India accounts for approximately 8 million of the Disney+ paid subscribers — giving analysts a glimpse into how many subscribers the Hotstar service has, which has been a mystery until now.

Disney acquired Hostar and its parent, Star, through its acquisition of most of 21st Century Fox’s assets in 2019.

In India, the service has been rebranded as Disney+ Hotstar but the service still exists as a standalone offering outside of that country.

Disney raised the price of Hotstar’s premium tier after adding Disney+ — a launch that was delayed due to the pandemic.