Disney Launches ESPN+ Streaming Service

Sports media giant ESPN is broadening its horizons. The company, through parent company Disney, launched a new streaming service on Thursday: ESPN+.

The service marks Disney’s first venture into the streaming game. Make no mistake, though, this new product is meant only for die-hard sports fans.

ESPN+ will be subscription based. The cost sits at a modest $4.99 per month or $49.99 for an entire year. Opting for a year-long membership saves customers about $10 compared to paying the monthly fee 12 times.

The new service will be different than the currently offered WatchESPN. On WatchESPN, cable subscribers can follow along with ESPN broadcasts on mobile devices.

Disney To Launch New App For Die-Hard Sports Fans

However, ESPN+ will be independent of cable providers. This independence also means the product will not grant access to content airing on ESPN.

Therefore, this is not, in fact, a cheaper option for those looking to ditch cable but keep sports content. ESPN+ will be a compliment to cable programming and feature original, exclusive content.

According to ESPN President Jimmy Pitaro, live sports will still be available in the app. The service will offer daily Major League Baseball games, adding up to over 150 games. The service will also provide coverage for the National Hockey League, Major League Soccer, cricket, rugby, and other sports.

Pitaro says the new format will help show love to sports that may go underappreciated by typical sports fans and networks. Along with live-airing sports, ESPN+ will have shows as well.

The entire 30 for 30 documentary series will be available, including new entry “The Last Days of Knight.” Currently, “The Last Days of Knight” is open exclusively via the new app.
A new original show will premiere as well. It will feature Kobe Bryant analyzing basketball.

As of now, access to the application is only available in the United States. There are no current plans to expand, although Pitaro says he is open to exploring the idea.