Disney+ to launch in India on March 29, to rebrand Hotstar
New Delhi : The much-awaited Disney+ will be launched in India on March 29, the same day when a mega cricket event Indian Premier League will begin. It will be made available through Hotstar — which Disney owns through its acquisition of Fox — with both Hotstar VIP and Hotstar Premium being rebranded to 'Disney+ Hotstar'.
The company has not revealed the price of the packages to avail the services.
Disney CEO Bob Iger made the announcement on its quarterly earnings call on Tuesday. “We're excited to announce that we will be launching Disney+ in India through our Hotstar service on March 29th at the beginning of the Indian Premier League cricket season,” Iger said Tuesday. “We will be rebranding our existing Hotstar VIP and Premium subscription tiers to Disney Plus Hotstar. We see this as a great opportunity to use the proven platform of Hotstar to launch the new Disney+ service in one of the most populous countries and fastest growing economies in the world.”
“We're not giving specifics about price at this point but expect that there'll be two primary products brought into India,” Iger explained later. “One will be more premium in nature that will include the entire library, so with the original programming and the other one will be more basic that will have the library and not the original programming.
“Priced for the market and launched at a very peak period of time for the IPL, the cricket league. And so, we think it's an opportune moment, we take advantage of the presence of Star in the market and the millions of subscribers that they also have, we take advantage of the sports tie-in, and we use the interface and the technology that includes the billing that already exists to launch a service, we believe, under very, very optimal circumstances.”
While it will be launched in India as Disney+ Hotstar, the same service will be launched in UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, and Austria on March 24. It originally launched last November in the US, Canada, Netherlands, Australia, and New Zealand.