Real Talk: A nerdy dad’s review of Disney Plus

Ah Disney Plus. All of the Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic you could ever handle…all with a magical dash of Fox sprinkled (pixie dusted?) in.

It was released to everyone Tuesday morning…and then it immediately crashed. I went to introduce my three-year-old Alex to the wonderful world of nostalgic Disney movie (you know, the golden age…90s Lion King, 90s Aladdin) and it was getting the skinny ball. After that, I was just getting (Wreck It) Ralph and Vannillape holding a WiFi signal indicator telling me there was an error.

When I looked last night, Disney hadn’t released a statement regarding that, they might at some point, but my guess is about 23 billion people (or however many people are in the world…I know it’s not 23 billion so be chill) were trying to log-in at once.

On day two – it seems all of the issues have been hammered out. So let’s talk about the service itself.

The Content

Last week, I talked about Apple TV Plus. It has like four and a half shows and is basically free…or it should be. This is NOT Apple TV Plus.

The bottom line…the content on Disney Plus is overwhelming. It is simply amazing. With that said, don’t log in expecting to marathon every Disney movie or show you’ve ever loved.

Some movies, like Avengers: Infinity War for example – are still licensed to Netflix, until sometime next year I think. Before Disney decided to run into the streaming world like a bull in a china shop, they gave other streamers access to their content. In some cases, it was exclusive access. That means even Disney can’t use it until their contract is up.

You will run into that with a decent number of newer movies. I think in the next year or two, everything should be back with the Mouse.

On top of the obvious movie selection, there’s also the Disney Junior shows. If your kid loves Doc McStuffins or Mickey Mouse Clubhouse…you’re in luck here. All of the Cars movies and their shorts, for example, are also there.

Now, I expected to log in to find Toy Story 4. That was not the case. It looks like for movies that were in theater…there will be about a four month delay between digital blue-ray release before they are able to be watched on Disney Plus.

I knew The Simpsons would be there, but I was not expecting some of the family friendly Fox movies. My wife almost screamed when she saw 10 Things I Hate About You.

The Cost

There’s a seven day free trial. After that it will cost you $7 a month. If you are a cord cutter…and I’m guessing you are…they offer a bundle with Hulu and ESPN. That will cost you $12.99 for the basic Hulu package. That is Hulu – with commercials and no live tv option. Really….that is 100 percent worth it in my opinion. I could care less, honestly, about ESPN but I know a lot of people do. It’s a great deal.

The Extras

Do you have a burner iPad for your kid? Like a four generation old iPad that is so slow but works for the person that throws everything? Maybe you just worry about data on your phone. Disney Plus will let you download the movies to your phone so you can watch them offline. If you are on a long road trip, load up the iPad with a couple of movies and hit the road. They let you select the quality of the video to determine how much storage is used on your device. So if you have a 32 gig something, you can do an SD version. If you are rocking 512 gigs than download that bad boy in 4K HDR.

With one subscription, you will be able to watch on four devices at once. You can watch Iron Man 2 in the living room while your kid watches Finding Dory in the bedroom. You can download offline to 10 different devices.

Is it a Netflix killer?

You will hear a lot of this. Will Disney Plus kill Netflix? Absolutely not. Reed Hastings (the CEO of Netflix) would have to turn Stranger Things into a romantic comedy…raise prices another 20 bucks, and then call each customer and personally tell them how much he hates their mothers before Netflix would die.

Netflix has been steadily raising prices though. With the content they churn out, I think most people are fairly okay with it. People will grumble on Twitter and then move on. Disney Plus will force Netflix to rethink its pricing scheme.

Nothing has ever truly been a Netflix competitor. Amazon and Hulu tried. Apple MIGHT try at some point. Disney…Disney has the power and back catalogue to play ball. Competition is a great thing my friends. You need someone to keep Netflix on their toes – and Disney is the only name in the game that can do that.

At the end of the day, will this really hurt Netflix? Not anytime soon. I think most people will keep both and be happy they aren’t paying $150 for the Comcast triple play cable bundle.

Fast forward 10 years…if Netflix doesn’t stay competitive I think Disney could overtake its subscriber base. Right now, Disney is banking on your nostalgia and the awesome stuff they’ve already made. That works, for the record. Moving forward, they will need to pump out that exclusive content.

They plan on it, by the way. Stars Wars shows, Marvel shows, spin-offs from Pixar movies, rebooting old content. It’s coming and Disney has an endless amount of already established intellectual property to pull it off.

There’s room for two right now. Both are great services…and quite frankly a bargain. Even with Netflix raising prices, it is still cheap…and it would be for anything less than $20.

The REAL bottom line

Should you get it? Absolutely. Your kid will love it. You will love it. It’s cheaper than a trip to McDonalds.

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