The Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger says the company will be “mindful” of piracy and password sharing concerns when it launches its first direct-to-consumer streaming service Disney+ on Nov. 12.
When asked about Netflix co-founder Reed Hastings, who previously credited piracy with helping the streaming giant succeed, Iger said piracy is “obviously something we have to watch.”
Netflix product chief Greg Peters said during the company’s quarterly call in October that Netflix would be looking into “consumer-friendly” ways to crack down on subscribers sharing login information — a practice that costs the company upwards of $1.5 billion annually.
“I think it’ll be similar to what others are doing. It’s obviously something we’ll be mindful of,” Iger told CNBC when asked about Disney’s approach to streaming piracy and password sharing.
“We’re setting up a service that is very family friendly, we expect families to be able to consume it — four live streams at a time, for instance. We’ll watch it carefully with the various tools, technology tools, that we have available to us to monitor it. But it’s obviously something we have to watch,” he said.
During Disney’s fourth quarter earnings call on Thursday, where Iger said Disney+ was proving to be a four quadrant product with broad interest, Iger reported the four-stream feature was “very popular” among consumers when Disney+ was tested in the Netherlands.
“We also saw that people’s interest in the product itself was very, very broad meaning across all of the brands,” Iger said on the call, pointing to the streaming service’s five main brands: Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and National Geographic.
“We learned that some of the features, including the 4K, the HDR movies were very, very popular,” Iger added. “The fact that you can have four concurrent live streams was very popular, the personalization was also quite popular, and most importantly, the ability to download without restriction was very, very popular.”
“The demographics were far broader than a lot of people expected them to be. This is well beyond kids and family, clearly. This is a four quadrant product, with adult men and women as well as kids families watching or using the service,” he said.
Disney+ launches in the United States on Nov. 12.