(NBC News) The “streaming wars” officially have a major new player.
Disney+ joined the fray Tuesday morning, presenting a big, new rival for established players such as Netflix and Hulu.
Disney+ enters the streaming battle loaded with ammunition from its own treasury of classic titles, as well as newer hits from the worlds of “Star Wars” and the Marvel Comics universe.
“Right out of the gate, they’re going to be a real serious competitor to Netflix,” predicts Hollywood Reporter Digital Media Editor Natalie Jarvey. “The first real competitor, at a global scale, that Netflix has had in a long time.”
That’s also because of price. The $7 dollar a month cost is about half of netflix’s most popular $13 plan. Meanwhile, some customers of Verizon’s wireless and home internet plans can get Disney+ free for a year.
Netflix already has a massive headstart, with 150 million subscribers worldwide, and as streaming options multiply, subscription fatigue becomes a factor for some consumers.
“When you add up all the prices to have multiple services in addition to paying internet, it actually winds up being pretty pricey,” notes CNET’s Joan Solsman.
That sets up a potential streaming service shakeout down the line.
“I do think that people will start to choose, which ones are they using the most, which ones have the most value in their lives and they might get rid of the other ones,” Jarvey says.