Disney Takes Aim at Password Sharing on Streaming Services, Following Netflix’s Lead

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Disney Takes Aim at Password Sharing

In a bid to curb rampant password sharing among its Disney Plus subscribers, the entertainment giant Disney is gearing up to implement measures similar to those adopted by Netflix earlier this year. According to Disney’s CEO Bob Iger, the practice of password sharing has been more than just a minor issue and has garnered significant attention. In response, Disney is now actively exploring various methods to gain control over this widespread phenomenon.

Iger revealed, “We already have the technical capability to monitor much of this [password sharing]. And I’m not going to give you a specific number, except to say that it’s significant. What we don’t know, of course, is as we get to work on this, how much of the password sharing as we basically eliminate it will convert to growth in subs. Obviously, we believe there will be some, but we’re not speculating.” This statement was made during the company’s Q2 2023 earnings report.

The upcoming changes to combat password sharing will involve updating subscriber agreements to include new terms regarding sharing policies. These updates are anticipated to be announced later this year, with the actual rollout of strategies aimed at driving monetization expected sometime in 2024.

Disney’s arch-rival, Netflix, had already begun testing password-sharing restrictions in specific countries before expanding the program to additional regions, such as Canada, New Zealand, Portugal, and Spain. Netflix’s approach has included urging users to cease sharing accounts outside their households and to instead subscribe individually.

As the streaming landscape becomes increasingly competitive and subscriber growth plateaus, streaming giants are faced with the challenge of finding innovative strategies to boost revenue and retain customers. The industry leaders are exploring multiple avenues, including potential price hikes, the introduction of more affordable ad-supported tiers, and, as demonstrated by Disney and Netflix, a crackdown on password sharing.

Disney, in line with its overall strategy, has also revealed plans for substantial subscription fee increases set to take effect later in the year. These adjustments signify the entertainment industry’s ongoing evolution and adaptation to the ever-changing dynamics of the digital streaming realm.

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