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Disney+ will begin cracking down on password sharing in June; full rollout in September

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The Walt Disney Company has been warning people for months that it plans to crack down on password sharing for its Disney+ streaming service, along with Hulu and ESPN+. Today, we have some real time frames for when all of this will actually happen.

In a new interview with CNBC, and posted on its YouTube channel, Disney CEO Bob Iger stated:

In June we will be launching our first real foray into password sharing . . . Just a few countries and a few markets, but then it will grow significantly with a full rollout in September.

Iger indicated that trying to reduce the amount of password sharing would be one of the ways that Disney will try to turn its streaming services into profitable businesses. He did not reveal the markets that will be affected first by this change. He also didn't provide details on how the company intends to handle password sharers in terms of new fees.

Netflix famously began its program to cut down password sharing on its service in May 2023 in the US, by making people who don't live in the same household but use someone else's account pay $7.99 a month. The strategy seems to have worked for the streamer as Netflix continues to add to its subscriber numbers. In the fourth quarter of 2023, it added 13.1 million new paid users, which was well above predictions.

Last week, Disney+ officially integrated content from its Hulu streaming business in the US. In today's CNBC interview, Iger indicated the Disney+-Hulu mashup is doing "extremely well". More details will be revealed during the company's next financial report which will be released in the next few weeks. Disney will also launch an expanded ESPN stand-alone streaming service in 2025, with live access to all of the ESPN cable sports channels.

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