Three years after the launch of Disney Plus, Disney on Thursday debuted the advertising-supported version of the service, called Disney Plus Basic. Disney Plus Basic, which is available to subscribers for $7.99 per month compared to Disney Plus Premium at $10.99 per month, is supported by more than 100 advertisers, including Kohls, Target, Walmart and many more.
Disney now joins Discovery Plus, Netflix, HBO Max, Hulu and Peacock as major subscription-based streaming services that offer ad-supported tiers. Netflix just introduced its ad-supported tier in early November. Warner Bros. Discovery is expected to merge HBO Max and Discovery Plus into one service called Max.
Disney also worked with all major agencies prior to the launch, including Dentsu, Havas, Horizon, IPG, Omnicom Group, Publicis, RPA, Stagwell and WPP. Those agencies represent more than a dozen advertising categories including retail, apparel, autos, financial services, restaurants, technology, telcom, CPG and travel.
“Today we welcome Disney Plus with ads to the largest, most diverse and impactful portfolio in the industry,” said Rita Ferro, president, Disney Advertising, in a statement. “We are committed to connecting our clients to the best storytelling in the world while delivering innovation and viewer-first experiences in streaming now and in the future.”
Subscription plans with ads are now available across the entire Disney Bundle and Hulu Plus Live TV service. Disney Plus Basic subscribers have access to Disney Plus’ full content catalog, including exclusive originals and library content; the ability to create up to seven profiles per account, including setting profile PINs and content ratings through parental controls; concurrent viewing on four supported devices; and high quality video formats, including, where supported, 4K, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, Full HD, HDR10 and expanded aspect ratio with IMAX Enhanced.
Subscribers can subscribe to the Disney Bundle Duo Basic, which includes Disney Plus and Hulu with ads for $9.99 per month; Disney Bundle Trio Basic, which adds ESPN Plus with ads to that package for $12.99 per month; and Hulu Plus Live TV with ads, which includes the ad tiers of Disney Plus and ESPN for $69.99 per month.
“Today’s launch marks a milestone moment for Disney Plus and puts consumer choice at the forefront,” said Michael Paull, president, direct to consumer, also in a statement. “With these new ad-supported offerings, we’re able to deliver greater flexibility for consumers to enjoy the full breadth and depth of incredible storytelling from The Walt Disney Company.”
Subscriptions to Disney Plus Basic are intended only for use in the U.S. and in countries where an ad-supported subscription is available. Disney Plus Basic subscribers will not have access to such premium features as downloads, group watch and share play, as well as Dolby Atmos, at launch.