As promised, Disney has begun selling a version of its Disney+ bundle that includes ESPN+ and ad-free Hulu.
The bundle costs $18.99 per month, approximately $6 less than paying for each service individually. The company still sells a $12.99 per month bundle that include Hulu with ads.
Presumably, the $18.99 per month price point will only last for about two months before Disney+ price increases take effect in late March.
In December, Disney announced that Disney+, which launched in November 2019, would be getting its first price increase. Beginning March 26, 2021, the service will be priced in the U.S. at $7.99 per month or $79.99 per year, while the Disney Bundle with Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+ will be priced at $13.99 per month. That likely means the Disney+ bundle with ad-free Hulu will jump to $19.99 per month.
The price hike will help Disney+, which has grown rapidly since its launch, toward its profitability goal. Late last year, the company said Disney had reached 86.8 million subscribers, well past the 60 million to 90 million subscribers that were originally expected by 2024.
Disney has been selling Disney+, ESPN+ and Hulu together in a service bundle since November 2019 and while it’s likely contributed to faster subscriber growth for each service, it’s had an adverse effect on average revenue per user. ARPU at ESPN+ decreased from $5.15 to $4.54 and it also decreased from $12.67 to $12.59 at Hulu SVOD only, both of which the company partly attributed to the bundle.
For Disney’s fiscal fourth quarter, the company said revenues for its direct-to-consumer and international segment rose 41% to $4.9 billion and segment operating loss decreased from $751 million to $580 million.