Disney+ to overtake Netflix for subs within four years

Streaming subscriptions are set to increase by 485 million between 2021 and 2027, with the market set for a new top-dog.

According to Digital TV Research, the global total of SVOD subscriptions will reach 1.69 billion within five years, with six US-based platforms having 988 million paying SVOD subscribers by 2027, up from 612 million in 2021.

The report predicts that Netflix, although still the market leader today, will only add 31 million subscribers between 2021 and 2027 while in the same period losing 4 million subs in the US.

The most bold statement made by the report is the prediction that Disney+ will overtake Netflix in 2025. It estimates that Disney+ will add 144 million subscribers between 2021 and 2027 to take its total to 274 million.

This will be buoyed by the roll out of Disney+ Hotstar to 13 Asian countries by 2027. Between these 13 countries, they will supply 14 million (42%) of the global Disney+ subscriber total. However, the lower ARPU in this region will mean that those 42% of subscribers only contribute 11% (US$1.58 billion) of Disney+’s predicted 2027 revenues of US$14.7 billion.

As such, Netflix will remain the revenue winner, with its revenue increasing US$4 billion from 2021 to a total of US$34 billion by 2027. This figure will be similar to Disney+, HBO Max and Paramount+ revenues combined.

Simon Murray, principal analyst at Digital TV Research, said: “Our Netflix forecasts for 2027 are 29 million lower than our February update – at 253 million. Netflix needs to boost its content to counter its fresher and cheaper rivals.”

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