Disney Plus has seen a pretty huge response in its first two days of launch. The platform already has 10 million subscribers and counting, and it’s only available in the US, Canada, and the Netherlands. Well, there’s some good news for our Indian readers, as we now have a tentative timeline for the launch of Disney’s streaming service in the country.
TechCrunch reports that Disney plans to bring Disney Plus to India and some South Asian countries by second half of 2020. Citing sources familiar with the matter, the publication says that Disney Plus content will be a part of Hotstar in India.
Hotstar is the most popular streaming services in the country, with over 300 million monthly active users. The move to merge the Disney Plus catalog with Hotstar seems quite predictable since Disney owns Hotstar. It would be much easier and less time consuming for Disney to use Hotstar’s ready-made streaming infrastructure in India.
Disney Plus features a large collection of movies and TV shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, and National Geographic. This will substantially add to Hotstar’s content offerings in India and heat up streaming wars in the country.
Hotstar has been riding high on the wave of exclusive cricket streaming deals in India. It also has most of HBO’s film and TV catalog, which is what makes it pretty popular.
However, Hotstar’s highest streaming resolution is set at 1080p. It’s unclear if the service will gain 4K HDR streaming when for Disney Plus content like the Disney Plus app. If it does, it will truly challenge the likes of Netflix which offers support for Dolby Vision and 4K streaming.
With all this new content and a possible bump in resolution, Hotstar’s subscription pricing could also see a change. TechCrunch reports that Disney plans to raise Hotstar’s monthly subscription fee before the Disney Plus India launch.
Hotstar is currently priced at Rs 299 (~$4)/month or Rs 999 (~$14)/year. Sources tell the publication that the price hike could happen by the end of the first quarter next year and that prices could double to $30/year (Rs 2,160).
After its India launch, Disney Plus reportedly plans to expand Hotstar with all the new content to Indonesia and Malaysia.
Are you excited for Disney Plus coming to India? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.