As noted by The Hollywood Reporter, investment company Cowen & Co. based the report on a poll of 2,500 US consumers. The study showed that 21% of participants had signed up for Disney+, and 5.8% of Netflix users canceled their membership after switching to the new platform, though there was still an 80% overlap of subscribers using both streaming services. Overall, the numbers show that Netflix will potentially lose up to 1.6 million of its patrons in the fourth quarter of 2019, the same time both Disney+ and Apple TV officially launched.
It’s not great news for Netflix, but it’s also not completely detrimental. Based off his findings, analyst John Blackledge projects that even despite the setback, a small level of “incremental churn appears manageable,” and as old members leave, new ones will arrive. According to the report, the streaming platform is still on track to surpass their fourth quarter goal of adding 7.6 million new subscribers.
In a call discussing Netflix’s third quarter earnings, CEO Reed Hastings seemed unconcerned about Disney+’s impressive new launch, and explained that Netflix had weathered competition from companies like Amazon, Hulu, and YouTube for years, and that “fundamentally, there is not a big change here.” He continued, “All of us are competing with linear TV and we’re all relatively small to linear TV.”
Disney+ officially debuted on November 12th (with a few hiccups), equipped with nearly 450 movie titles and 7,500 television episodes. The subscription service has more on the way as well, including several Marvel-themed projects and a reboot of Lizzie McGuire, along with a potential TV adaptation of the 1980s hit film Turner & Hooch. Meanwhile Netflix has had a strong year with high-profile original content like The Irishman and Marriage Story, but it is losing some of its biggest series like Friends and The Office to a new crop of streaming services.