As part of their Q3 2022 earnings, Disney announced that ESPN+ added 500K subscribers in Q3 2022, reaching 22.8 million subscribers at the end of June 2022. This is up 53% from 14.9 million subscribers they had last year.
ESPN+’s corporate sibling streamers Disney+ and Hulu also saw subscriber growth during the quarter. Disney+ added 14.4 million subscribers during the quarter to jump up to 152M worldwide and Hulu gained 600,000 subscribers during the quarter to jump up to 46.2M worldwide; 42.2M of those customers opted for the subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) option, while 4M have the live TV streaming service as well.
Not accounting for overlap thanks to the Disney Bundle, Disney’s streaming service have 221.1 million customers. For comparison, at the end of the second quarter, Netflix reported having 220.67 million subscribers, keeping it far and away the largest subscription streaming service in the world on an individual basis, but collectively, Disney has claimed the streaming crown.
This comes right before an upcoming price hike for the sports streaming service. Beginning Aug. 23, ESPN+’s standalone subscription rate will be $9.99 per month, up from $6.99 per month currently. The Annual rate will raise from $69.99 to $99.99 at that time as well.
“While it is a significant change to the price, it’s reflective of the increased scope, scale, and value of ESPN+ as we continue to add significantly to both live sports and original programs & series, and it is part of an established plan to ensure ESPN+ is a profitable and strong long-term business,” a Disney representative confirmed to The Streamable.
At the time, Disney said that the price increase would not impact the Disney Bundle, which packages subscriptions to ESPN+ with those to Hulu and Disney+. Currently, the Bundle rate that includes Hulu with ads is $13.99 per month and $19.99 without; both will remain unchanged.
There are also not currently any concrete plans for Disney to introduce a direct-to-consumer (DTC) option for the linear version of ESPN, according to the network’s chairman Jimmy Pitaro. Following rumors about a potential spinoff of the network, Disney appears to have decided to keep the worldwide leader in sports as is.
In more positive news, ESPN+ confirmed that the first year of its NHL deal was a success, as the company reported that subscriptions to the service — which is the home to NHL.TV — grew 62% in the last year. The streamer’s 27 postseason contests in May (16 first round, 11 second round) averaged 1.2M viewers, up 81% vs. the 25 games in May a year ago on the now defunct NBCSN (23 first round, two second round) according to Front Office Sports.
ESPN+ also added a ton of new content throughout the past few months, including CFL football, XFL football in 2023, the Women's EURO 2022 soccer tournament, Sun Belt collegiate sporting events, and youth sports thanks to the Geico Summer Series.
ESPN+ is a live TV streaming service that gives access to thousands of live sporting events, original shows like Peyton’s Place, the entire library of 30 for 30, E:60, The Last Dance, as well exclusive written analysis from top ESPN insiders.
The service can be subscribed for $9.99 / month per month or annually for $99.99 / year.
You will get a daily out-of-market game from MLB, and every out-of-market NHL with NHL Power Play (previously NHL.TV). For NFL Fans, they have an exclusive NFL game, and simulcast select Monday Football games.
The service has some of the most attractive soccer coverage including Bundesliga, LaLiga, FA Cup, UEFA Nations League, EFL Championship, EFL Carabao Cup, Eredevise and more.
College sports fans will be able to watch thousands of games and events including football, basketball, baseball, softball, soccer, track & field, gymnastics, swimming & diving, lacrosse, wrestling, volleyball, golf, and more.
For boxing and UFC fans, the service offers Top Rank boxing and will be the home of 15 exclusive UFC events.
ESPN+ now includes exclusive insights from analysts like Mel Kiper and Todd McShay (which used to be part of ESPN Insider), as well as premium Fantasy Tools & PickCenter.