Why Disney+ would benefit from launching channels like on TV

The future big update of Disney+ would integrate linear channels. They would broadcast dedicated content continuously, with themes like Star Wars or Marvel.

Will Disney+ succeed where Netflix failed? In 2020, Netflix launched Netflix Direct. Its objective was simple: to continuously broadcast content, with a schedule of planned programs – like a television channel. This idea disappeared into anonymity, in 2022. Today, we learn that Disney+ could bring it back to life.

In an article published on April 15, 2024, The Information indicates that Disney+ could soon launch several channels via its application. They would be thematic: a Star Wars channel, a Marvel channel, a channel which broadcasts the company’s classics… The launch timing is not specified and the multinational did not want to comment on this indiscretion.

Obi-Wan Kenobi.  // Source: YouTube Star Wars screenshot
Obi-Wan Kenobi. // Source: YouTube Star Wars screenshot

Disney+ wants to be like TV

It may seem strange to see Disney+, a platform allowing you to choose from a huge catalog, going against the philosophy of SVOD. Doing what TV does means imposing a film, series or documentary at a fixed time. This is precisely the whole point: a linear channel removes pressure for users who just have to consume what is offered to them. When you’re simply looking to relax, removing the long minutes of navigation, and the hesitation that goes with it, is one less friction.

The Netflix Direct experiment didn’t work, but perhaps things have changed since then. In any case, this is what a study shared by Bloomberg on April 8 indicates: in the United States, the growth of the Tubi service proves that viewers love to engage in content, without needing to think (possibly by leaving it behind to do something else). This is what television has offered since the dawn of time: you turn it on and let yourself be carried away.

Tubi is considered a FAST platform, for free ad-supported streaming television (i.e. free streaming television, financed by advertising). Obviously, Disney+ would still require a subscription to access its channels, which would of course be peppered with advertisements. They would offer another way to benefit from Disney+, coupled with a way of highlighting certain licenses to retain subscribers. For example, if you come across the first episode ofAndor by chance, perhaps you will be tempted to go binge-watch the rest of the season (on demand this time). For those who are undecided, there is potential.

Source: Numerama EditingSource: Numerama Editing

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