If you can't beat them, you what?
Taking a page from Netflix's crackdown on password sharing on its streaming channel, movie streaming studio Disney is gearing up to implement a plan to curb password sharing on its streaming service Disney Plus.
While the exact scope of this decision remains uncertain – whether it will exclusively affect Disney Plus or extend to its sibling platform, Hulu – CEO Bob Iger confirmed the company's intention during the Q3 2023 earnings call. Iger emphasized that Disney is actively exploring strategies to prevent users from sharing their accounts with individuals outside their own households.
But while Disney Plus and Hulu subscribers may be concerned about this new development, it could be a while before it becomes a reality – which could take up to 16 months and might not be in place until 2025, according to Iger.
A factor that may stall this move is Disney's improving financial performance.
So far, Disney has made progress in stabilizing its direct-to-consumer (DTC) operations, which encompass streaming. Operating losses in this segment decreased from $1.1 billion in Q2 2023 to $500 million in the subsequent three months.
If this positive trend continues, Disney may delay the rollout of its password crackdown, allowing users to continue sharing accounts for a while longer. Nonetheless, users may need to prepare for the eventuality of paying for individual streaming accounts.
Given the favourable outcomes observed with Netflix's similar approach to password crackdown, it's conceivable that other streaming services, including Disney, Prime Video and Max would follow suit.