Disney’s newest streaming service was released on Nov. 12 for a mere $6.99 a month, featuring a wide array of childhood classics as well as new and original films and series.
Competing against streaming giants like Netflix, Amazon and Apple, Disney+ holds its own, even if it did experience some technical difficulties on launch day which prevented users from using the streaming service, and it lacks proper security, since it has already been hacked and user accounts have been sold on the dark web.
A library that consists of hundreds of new and old titles makes the streaming service worth the price. However, Disney+ has flaws that can be frustrating to its viewers.
Unlike Netflix, Disney+ lacks a “Continue Watching” bar that allows viewers to immediately hop back in to what they were watching previously. Instead, viewers have to manually find the title and click on it to subsequently bring up its page and hit the new “Resume” button which, believe it or not, wasn’t available upon launch. The button also has a small blue bar at the bottom that visually shows viewers how far they are into a movie or episode.
Another small issue with Disney+ is that it currently lacks a wide array of original content to watch. For viewers who aren’t interested in a nostalgia trip filled with childhood favorites, there are few original shows or films to watch. On the other hand, the current selection of Disney+ originals are high quality. Shows like “The Mandalorian” will remind fans why they love the Star Wars universe so much, and “The World According to Jeff Goldblum” will leave viewers wanting more of Goldblum’s charming personality.
Speaking of original shows, Disney+ releases new episodes of its original shows on a weekly basis. Currently, there are only two episodes out of each original series. Even though this can be a bit frustrating for some viewers who like to binge new shows all at once, it’s a sly, yet smart, tactic to ensure viewers come back each week to keep using the streaming service.
Now, what are some of the benefits of Disney+? For one, the user interface features a simple and sleek design. It’s easy on the eyes, with its cool tones and dark color scheme: Perfect for those late night binges. Users have the option of customizing their own profile, similar to Netflix, and can pick just about any Disney character possible for their profile picture. While editing a profile, users can also choose to enable or disable the autoplay feature, which causes the next episode in a series to play automatically, or background video, which allows video to play in the background of pages when viewing a title in the app.
At the top of the Disney+ home page are five clearly labeled boxes that allow users to find content by a specific Disney property. Whether you’re specifically looking for something that is Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars or National Geographic, these boxes help make navigating the 600-plus-title library that much easier.
Similar to Netflix, titles are organized into clear and succinct rows that help viewers find the next title to watch. For example, the “Out of the Vault” row features Disney animated classics like “The Little Mermaid” or “Aladdin.” Meanwhile, the “Disney Channel Favorites” row features titles like “High School Musical” and “Lemonade Mouth.”
Thankfully, Disney is responsible enough to remain aware of the subject material and characters of its older titles. In films like “Lady and the Tramp” or “The Jungle Book,” Disney+ includes a content warning, saying, “This program is presented as originally created. It may contain outdated cultural depictions.”
Disney+ offers a large library of family-friendly content to users for a great price of $6.99 a month, compared to the Netflix Standard plan’s price of $12.99 a month or Hulu’s ad-free price of $12.99 a month. Disney+ also offers a 7-day free trial, in case you want to spend some time with the service before committing to its monthly plan.
Overall, Disney+ is a great streaming service. Despite a few hiccups and needed tweaks, the amount of content that users currently have access to, and the amount of content that will be added to the library next year, alone make it worth the price.
Thumbnail photo courtesy of @disneyplus Instagram.
Brandon Barzola is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at email@example.com.