Disney+ racks up 5 million downloads on launch day in Europe

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Disney+ has finally landed in the UK.
Photo: Apple

The Disney+ mobile app is off to a roaring start in Europe and the UK just days after it launched earlier this week.

Third-party app analytics firm App Annie revealed that the Disney+ app has been downloaded over 5 million times on launch day, possibly thanks to millions of residents having to shelter-in-place due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Austria, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain, Switzerland and the U.K. were the latest countries to gain access to Disney+. The service’s launch date in France was pushed back to April 7. Disney+ and other streaming services have been asked to reduce their bitrates in Europe to ensure the broadband infrastructure in countries remains smooth as more people are forced to work from home.

Business is boomin for Disney+

It appears that the 25% reduction in video quality in Europe didn’t do much to hurt Disney+’ early adoption numbers. Although the 5 million estimated downloads doesn’t mean the service gained 5 million paying subscribers, it’s a strong sign of pent up demand for the service’s giant catalog of content from Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic and more.

Disney+ scooped up 28.6 million subscribers by February 3 after being available in the US, Canada, Netherlands, Australia and New Zealand for a few months. The service seems to have been a smashing success compared to Apple TV+ which still hasn’t released subscriber numbers. Some third-party estimates for Apple TV+ subscribers have come in as low as 3 million.

App Annie estimated in December that subscribers are spending an average of 3 hours and 10 minutes in the Disney+ app. Netflix subscribers still rate the highest at 4 hours and 20 minutes though. Those numbers don’t include viewing on TVs and computers though.