Whilst Disney’s D23 conference this weekend has been very much focused on what content they have to share, further details have come to light about how they intend to share it – namely technical specifications for the Disney+ streaming service.
A while back it was announced that Disney+ launches on November 12th and will charge $6.99 per month along with boasting “more than 500 feature films and over 7,500 show episodes at launch”. Last week came word that the service at launch will have apps for iOS, Apple TV, Android, Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and Roku – basically everyone but Amazon.
Today, attendees and journalists at the D23 conference have spoken with company reps during demonstrations of the service on the show floor and got some confirmations and denials. Those seeing the service in action say the interface is said to be similar in build to Netlfix.
First up, Disney+ will stream some of its content using up to high-quality 4K Dolby Vision or HDR10 and with Dolby Atmos. That’s much like Netflix, however unlike its rival Disney’s highest quality tier is included with the standard plan at no extra charge.
Up to four registered devices can stream video concurrently and Disney+ will reportedly offer subtitles. Content will be available for download as well with subscribers having access to unlimited downloads of shows and movies on the Disney+ app to watch offline later on up to ten mobile or tablet devices. There will also be no constraints on the number of times a title can be downloaded per year.
Subscribers can create up to seven user profiles, including a children profile, and select from over 200 avatars tailored to their favorite Disney, Pixar, Marvel or Star Wars characters.
Disney+ is also seemingly embracing bonus features for some titles with deleted scenes, documentaries and commentaries included on numerous films.
That’s the good news, now onto the bad. Disney+ won’t be adopting the binge model and so will be releasing all of its series in weekly episode installments. Binge-watching will have to wait until a season closes out.
Then there’s the content rating issue. Veteran entertainment journalist and all-round legend Eric Vespe spoke with a representative on the floor demonstrating the service and asked if R-rated content, such as much of 20th Century Fox’s library, would appear on Disney+. Their response? “He [the representative] said that Disney+ will all be PG-13 or softer.”
That could be a weakness that other streaming services will be quick to exploit. Vespe followed up asking if Fox’s harder edge stuff will end up on Hulu, he says “[I] just got a smile and ‘that’s a good assumption’ in return.”
— Walt Disney Television Animation News (@DisneyTVANews) August 23, 2019