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It’s still early, but Disney+ hasn’t killed Netflix yet

Published Nov 19th, 2019 7:06PM EST
Disney Plus vs Netflix
Image: Steven Senne/AP/Shutterstock

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We’ve now reached the one-week mark since the launch of Disney+, long enough for us to start to draw some early conclusions about the hotly anticipated service that’s introduced some fantastic exclusive content (like The Mandalorian series for Star Wars fans), plus Pixar movies, Disney movies from the famed vault and so much more.

Sure, there were some launch-day technical glitches, but the streamer nevertheless quickly turned Disney fans into stans who’ve helped underscore that a moment like this is the stuff that memes are made of. On launch day, meanwhile, a new report shows that the Disney+ racked up 4 million app downloads, and as of the end of November 12 when the streamer went live it had already amassed more than 10 million subscribers.

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By the way, here, for your viewing pleasure, are some of those memes we mentioned:

Light-heartedness aside, there’s still one lingering question surrounding the launch of this new streamer — what will the effect be on Netflix, and will that effect will be permanent? Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, for his part, was pretty gracious in public remarks the week prior to the debut of Disney+ when he praised Disney as the competitor “we really have the most to learn from.”

For now, though, it seems that the debut of Disney+ has barely dented Netflix at all. That’s according to a new Credit Suisse analyst report this week which went on to note that Disney+ app downloads leveled off with about 1.5 million per day over this past weekend. Meantime, Netflix app downloads have remained pretty consistent, at around 70,000 downloads per day, leading the analysts to write that “in the extremely short term, Netflix app downloads appear unaffected by the Disney+ launch.”

Along those same lines, here’s another interesting point noted by the analysts: During the first week Disney+ was available, Netflix app downloads were actually up 7% in the US compared to the preceding four weeks.

In a separate analyst note published on Monday and reported by Variety, Ben Swinburne of Morgan Stanley wrote that Netflix users spend around two hours a day minimum on the service. That’s “a fundamentally differentiated position with consumers than any of the recent streaming launches.” And “we maintain the view that there will be a very short list of truly global, truly (direct-to-consumer) streaming services that can earn attractive returns long-term — and our current view is (Netflix) and (Disney) will be two of those.”

Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.

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