Sky and Disney today announced a new multi-year deal that makes Disney+ available for purchase in the UK and Ireland on Sky Q (the company’s latest generation set-top box platform) as soon as the new direct-to-consumer streaming service appears in the UK, with the app then appearing on NOW TV (Sky’s Pay Lite offering) “in the coming months”. Kevin Mayer, Chairman of Walt Disney Direct-to-Consumer & International, comments: “We are delighted that Sky is selling the Disney+ service on their platform and, along with our other distribution partners, will deliver exceptional reach at launch.”
The deal also includes the first-pay window for 20th Century titles, meaning that existing Sky Cinema subscribers will continue to access movies from the studio.
Jeremy Darroch, Group Chief Executive at Sky, says: “We’ve built a strong partnership with Disney over three decades and we’re pleased that our customers in the UK and Ireland can continue to enjoy their world-class content – all in one place on Sky Q.”
The app will be integrated in the same way as Netflix. The plan is for Disney+ content to appear in search and recommendations, but this feature will not be available at launch.
Sky’s consumer advertising currently carries the tagline: ‘All the stuff you love – All in one place, easy’, and shows a graphic from the Elton John biopic film Rocketman from Sky Cinema plus the Netflix, Spotify and YouTube apps on the Sky Q screen.
The company already has a closely integrated package that combines Netflix with an array of other on-demand content (Ultimate on Demand) with the option to move Netflix billing from the streamer to Sky. Like a number of Pay TV operators, Sky is setting itself up as a super-aggregator.
Interested in the future of Pay TV aggregation? Then check out Connected TV World Summit, where the ‘Aggregator Primus’ session explores which media companies can secure the role of primary aggregator and content discovery agent in a world of increasingly fragmented viewing choices. See the full agenda here.