Disney may test its planned streaming OTT service Disney+ in the Netherlands, according to a report in The Information.
Disney has scheduled April 11 as the date to announce its plans with the new OTT streaming service.
The Netherlands test would be an attempt to iron out any kinks in the service before it is released to intense scrutiny for an American audience. It suggests that Disney has learned a lesson from technical glitches that afflicted a 2015 launch of a streaming service in the UK, DisneyLife.
The Netherlands would be a good test market, as the country has high broadband penetration and consumers have been happy to take up SVOD services like Netflix and Videoland in large numbers. The test would take place before the roll-out in the US.
According to the report, the company is discussing whether it wants to partner with cable and online distributors to help give the service more early reach.
Disney+ will feature content from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and National Geographic, while all content divisions of the company are also preparing original material.
J.P. Morgan tells clients to expect Disney+ to eventually draw 160 million subscribers from around the world, more than Netflix’s current 139 million. “While there is little question there are more direct-to-consumer services today than ultimately should survive, we have no doubt that Disney+ remains on the short list,” analyst Alexia Quadrani writes.
In a related development, former director of original series at Netflix, Tehmina Jaffer, has joined Disney+ as SVP Business Affairs, leading all aspects of business affairs strategy, policy and procedure for its Content and Marketing team.
UPDATE. Meanwhile, a website is now active for people across Europe in several languages to sign up for more information on the Disney+ service.