Confirmed by Disney CEO Bob Iger in November last year, Disney Plus will debut in India on March 29, 2020, following the European launch on March 24. Disney Plus has already landed on several countries by offering services via its own app. But it is quite different in India as Disney Plus will be available on an existing streaming service in India. That is Hotstar.
Launch in India via Hotstar
Disney CEO Bob Iger announced at the company’s first quarter financial conference that Disney Plus is coming to India on March 29th via Hotstar. That is to say, Disney wants to merge its Hotstar and Disney Plus into a single app for Indians.
“We’re also excited to announce that we will be launching Disney+ in India through our Hotstar service on March 29th at the beginning of the Indian Premier League cricket season. We will be rebranding our existing Hotstar VIP and Premium subscription tiers to Disney plus Hotstar. We see this as a great opportunity to use the proven platform of Hotstar to launch the new Disney+ service in one of the most populous countries and fastest growing economies in the world.”
Beta testing ahead of schedule
It was noted that Disney Plus went live on March 11 for Hotstar Premium and Hotstar VIP subscribers, which is earlier than the official launch date. The new version of Hotstar was named Disney + Hotstar, using a royal blue and white design for its logo.
But all these changes vanished after the new update released in less than 24 hours. According to a spokesperson from Hotstar, it was beta testing Disney Plus in India ahead of schedule.
“A limited release of the beta version of the Disney+ Hotstar app is currently being tested with a small number of consumers, in preparation for the full-fledged app launch on 29th March.”
Pricing plans of the beta version
Disney Plus was added to Hotstar at no extra subscription fee. Both Hotstar Premium and Hotstar VIP subscriptions have access to Disney content. And Hotstar Premium plan is billed at Rs 299 per month (around $4) or Rs 999 per year (around $14) while Hotstar VIP plan is billed at Rs 365 per year ($5).
Content available on the beta version
According to the new description on the App Store and Google Play Store, much of Disney Plus content was available on the beta testing version.
“For our India users we’re bringing the world’s best stories from the best storytellers at Disney, Marvel, Pixar and Star Wars. 200+ movies, 100+ shows and 30+ originals!”
Hotstar paid users found they had access to many Disney originals, including Disney Family Sunday, One Day at Disney, The World According to Jeff Goldblum, The Mandalorian, Forky Asks a Question, Encore, Diary of a Future President, High School Musical: The Musical – The Series, etc.
It should be noted that only Hotstar subscribers have access to Disney Plus content. And the content is available in Hindi, Tamil, and Telugu for Hotstar Premium and VIP subscribers. But only Hotstar Premium users can get access to the content in English.
Of course, don’t forget that you can access Hotstar content. Hotstar VIP subscribers have unrestricted access to live sports (like VIVO IPL, Premier League, Formula 1 and Tennis), latest Star TV serials before they premiere on TV, latest Bollywood movies, Hotstar’s exclusive library of shows it has produced as Hotstar Specials. while Hotstar Premium subscribers have access to everything in VIP & the latest American TV shows, Hollywood movies, shows and Originals in all languages including English.
Content and price for the official launch
The beta testing version was rolled back from the India market. It will finally land on India via Hotstar on March 29 as scheduled. What will be available on Disney Plus Hotstar after the official launch is still to be announced. But one thing is for sure that Hotstar is going to provide better streaming services with more content from Disney Plus. It is not long before Indians can watch Disney originals.
Why you need a VPN to watch content on Disney Plus?
The good thing is that Disney Plus is coming to more countries. But the content varies from country to country. You will need a virtual private network to access geo-blocked content. It unblocks websites for you by masking your real IP address with that of its server. In this way, you are allowed to watch your favorite shows that are not available in your country.
RitaVPN lets you enjoy bufferless streaming on Disney Plus because it set no restrictions on bandwidth. Besides, it secures your Internet connection by redirecting your requests through its encrypted tunnel. Hence, you can enjoy 100% online invisibility from hackers and government spies working hard to track you.