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Disney to Shut Down Several TV Channels in Southeast Asia

by Duey Guison  May 15, 2021

With the demand for cable TV slowly waning due to the increased demand for streaming services, Disney announced that it will shut down several of its TV channels in Southeast Asia and Hong Kong.

In a response to Channel News Asia, The Walt Disney Company explained that it is “consolidating its Media Networks business primarily in Southeast Asia and Hong Kong”, as part of the company’s “global effort to pivot towards a direct-to-consumer-first model and further grow” its streaming services.

The list of TV channels that will be shut down by Disney are as follows:

  • Fox
  • Fox Crime
  • Fox Life
  • FX
  • Fox Action Movies
  • Fox Family Movies
  • Fox Movies
  • Star Movies China
  • Fox Sports
  • Fox Sports 2
  • Fox Sports 3
  • Star Sports 1
  • Star Sports 2
  • Disney Channel
  • Disney Junior
  • Nat Geo People
  • SCM Legend

As it transitions towards a more streamlined television portfolio, the only TV channels that will remain by October 1 are: Star Chinese Channel, Star Chinese Movies, National Geographic Channel, and Nat Geo Wild.

“These efforts will help us align our resources more efficiently and effectively to current and future business needs,” said the company.

Among the reasons for this move is that Disney intends to expand its Disney+ streaming service across more countries in Southeast Asia. Currently, Disney+ is available in Singapore and Indonesia, where it offers over 650 films and 15,000 episodes from various TV shows.

In Singapore, Disney+ is priced at S$ 11.98, or around Php 430 when converted. While it is priced the same as Netflix Basic, Disney+ has a few advantages. Netflix Basic only allows one stream and one download device at a time, while the resolution is limited to SD. Disney+, on the other hand, allows for up to four concurrent streams at the same time, and up to 10 download devices at a time.

Disney+ is reportedly coming soon to the Philippines, with a monthly subscription price pegged at Php 359/month–cheaper than Netflix Basic, which is Php 369/month.

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    “global effort to pivot towards a direct-to-consumer-first model and further grow” So, take value away from cable providers and pocket what is likely to be higher profits directly from the consumer. This sounds like a great deal. So, your cable based ISP loses 15 channels, charges the same amount of money per month, and then you’re expected to pay for Disney+ to get the channels back. Or, you just have cellular access and now you have to pay for data + Disney+. Also, when visiting hotels you’ll have less channels to choose from and their notoriously poor internet service.

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