Disney+ now has 54.5 million subscribers worldwide, a new total announced today during the company’s quarterly earnings call.
That means Disney has gained 4.5 million Disney+ subscribers since April 8, when it said that Disney+ had 50 million subscribers. Disney+ launched in November and has grown to almost $55 million subscribers over the course of the last six months.
Disney’s significant growth earlier this year came from launches of the service in the UK, Ireland, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria, France, Switzerland, and India, but the service has also seen a boost with everyone sheltering in place and working from home.
54.4 million subscribers is well ahead of Disney’s projected figures for the growth of Disney+. When the service launched, Disney estimated that it would see 60 to 90 million subscribers worldwide by the end of 2024, but if the current growth rate keeps up, Disney will hit that goal this year.
Apple has not provided subscriber numbers for Apple TV+, so there’s no direct comparison to make to Disney+. Apple has been providing a free year of service to everyone who purchases a new Apple device, so it will take some time before Apple has large numbers of paying subscribers.
Disney+ has a major edge over Apple TV+ because Disney has an established catalog of content along with many popular Star Wars and Marvel franchises to offer. “The Mandalorian,” the key show Disney+ premiered with, received more attention than any of Apple TV+’s launch shows, including “The Morning Show,” “Dickinson,” “See,” and “For All Mankind.”
Though Disney+ growth is solid, Disney lost about $1 billion in operating income in the March quarter due to the shuttering of its theme parks worldwide, including Disneyland in Anaheim, California and the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.