Those logging into their Disney+ streaming application may have recently noticed a peculiar new addition to the platform. After Disney CEO Bob Iger mentioned Hulu being merged into Disney+, the expected transition has finally occurred.
Hulu on Disney+
It is important to note that Hulu and Disney+ are still separate services offered as standalone entities. However, Disney’s complete acquisition of Hulu from Comcast has paved the way for incorporating the content into one application for those who subscribe to both streaming platforms.
Disney introduced a beta version of Hulu on Disney+ for Bundle subscribers, offering a seamless streaming experience. Users will find a new Hulu tile alongside Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic in their Disney+ app. Clicking on the Hulu tile leads to a Hulu Hub, allowing playback of Hulu’s vast library within Disney+.
This beta phase, starting now, aims to gather user feedback and understand needs before the official launch in March 2024. Joe Earley, Disney Entertainment’s President of Direct-to-Consumer, emphasizes managing expectations during this limited beta, enabling parents to set up controls.
Disney+ Parental Controls
The official announcement addresses concerns about adult-oriented Hulu content conflicting with Disney+’s family-friendly brand. The two-step launch approach ensures Disney+ remains a safe space for families, allowing subscribers time to explore Hulu content and adjust parental controls:
He underscored that one of the company’s top priorities is ensuring Disney+ remains a safe space for families. And that the two-step launch approach will allow Bundle subscribers with a Disney+ subscription to explore Hulu content and give Disney+ subscribers time to adjust parental controls and establish profiles for the entire family, if they don’t already exist.
Disney even provided a small video to provide tips and important information on how to set parental controls to avoid children seeing more adult-orientated content on the platform.
Earley highlights the value of the Bundle, offering an extensive content library at a competitive price. He hopes this integration enhances the viewing experience, increases engagement, and encourages standalone Disney+ and Hulu subscribers to upgrade to the Bundle.
Standalone Hulu and Disney+ apps will still be available to those who prefer it. However, Hulu + Live TV and Premium add-ons remain exclusive to the Hulu app.
Disney and Streaming
Disney hopes Hulu on Disney+ will boost engagement among subscribers. It is no secret that the entertainment giant has been suffering in its streaming endeavors. The company has taken drastic steps to try and turn a profit with Disney+, but it has yet to succeed.
Disney+ and Hulu have remained separate until now because Comcast owned a portion of Hulu. Disney announced its intention to buy out the 33% stake for a staggering $8.61 billion. Now that the deal is made, Disney fully controls the streaming application.
Whether this change will help Disney’s bottom line remains to be seen. Creating the merged bundle is a good way to make Disney+ look like it has many more content options. However, it doesn’t solve the issues currently plaguing the company’s streaming endeavors.
This post is originally appeared on Disney Dining.