As heated as the battle for global supremacy in the crowded video streaming space may have seemed just a couple of years ago, it has become increasingly clear in recent months that the market is largely headed for a duopoly.
That’s because the likes of Apple TV+, HBO Max, and Peacock are not really going anywhere while Disney+ is practically going everywhere, growing at a Netflix-threatening pace quarter after quarter.
That’s a huge number for the ever-expanding Walt Disney Company no matter how you look at it, inching closer to Netflix’s industry-leading 208 million paid subscriber base last updated in April for Q1 2021.
Following 29 and 28 percent surges in worldwide subscribers in Q3 and Q4 2020 compared to their previous quarters, Disney+ had to settle for the aforementioned 8.7 million sequential growth, equating to less than 10 percent, which was still more than enough to outpace Netflix’s modest 4 million or so gain during Q1 2021.
If current projections hold up, Disney+ could reach anywhere between 230 and 260 million paid global subscribers by the end of 2024, which is when the streaming platform’s parent company originally expected the service to sit at no more than 90 million users.
In comparison (although it’s obviously not a very fair one), Netflix broke the 100 million barrier at some point in 2017 after being founded in 1997 and branching out from the DVD sales and rental business to the online world in 2007.