Since being added to Disney Plus for the July 4th weekend, Hamilton has been a major success, topping the platform’s list of its most popular content. There has also been a lot of debate around the production, which brings the award-winning theatrical show to the screen in ways that showcase how live theater can reach new audiences on streaming. Disney have extra reasons to be pleased with the response to Hamilton, though, as it has driven up downloads of the Disney Plus app.
According to Variety, the Disney Plus app was downloaded 513,323 times globally between Friday, July 3rd and Sunday, July 5th. More than half of these downloads, 266,084 of them, were in the United States. As a result, Disney Plus downloads were up by a remarkable 72.4% in the US compared to the average of four weekends in June, and up by 46.6% over the average worldwide.
Good news, then, for Disney, although they’ll be hoping that any new subscribers won’t jump ship once they’ve watched Hamilton. The service did drop its free seven-day trial offer in June, against a subscriber base that reached 54.5 million in May 2020. Despite these numbers though, the platform does still have a challenge on its hands to keep adding exclusive original content to compete with the likes of Netflix and Amazon Prime.
A lot of people have been cancelling their subscriptions recently, a situation not made easier for Disney by the launch of HBO Max and the departure of several Disney Plus titles over the last few weeks. And with the various planned MCU series hit, like the rest of the industry, by COVID-19 delays, the streamer is currently a bit short of original content to keep subscribers happy between their big releases.
As a Disney Plus subscriber myself, I signed up for The Mandalorian and The Simpsons, but don’t regularly use the service in the same way as Netflix or Amazon Prime. Adding Hamilton has been a great success for the studio, then, but questions still remain over whether people will keep coming back for more content over time.