Disney Plus password-sharing crackdown is imminent — the free ride is almost over

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(Image credit: Disney)

Netflix paved the way for profitable password-sharing crackdowns, and now Disney Plus is following suit. Earlier this year, Disney Plus established anti-password-sharing rules that took effect on March 14 and, if broken, could result in restrictions or a ban from the service. Now, Disney plans to take it further.

In a recent interview with CNBC, Disney CEO Bob Iger outlined plans to turn the streaming service "not just into a profitable business, [but] into a growth business," partly by preventing multiple households from sharing one Disney Plus account (via The Verge). 

Get ready to say goodbye to the luxury of sharing your password as early as June —or make plans to binge your watchlist before canceling your account.

This new restrictive Disney Plus policy affects "a few countries" — more to come

Similar to Netflix, Disney Plus graciously plans to let multiple households stay on the same plan for an "additional fee." These paid sharing plans will start rolling out in June in "just a few countries in a few markets," but it's not clear which countries this ominous paid sharing test will hit first.

Regardless, by September, the Disney Plus password-sharing crackdown will be effective in all countries. Disney CFO Hugh Johnston confirmed during the company's February earnings call that this summer, subscribers "suspected of improper sharing" will be prompted to sign up for their own subscription or pay an "additional fee," which is unknown right now.

Disney Plus is the second-most popular streaming service, behind Netflix, and it has a lot of acquired content under its belt. But will that be enough to get current multi-household subscribers to pay for their own accounts? Bob Iger seems to think so.

When asked about the competition, Iger said "We know what you need to be successful in streaming and not everybody has that, and I’m not sure everybody can get it. We know that we can, given everything that I’ve discussed…the content that we have and the technology that we’re building and the brands that we have. I don’t think everybody does though."

In short, Disney Plus is coming for Netflix and the competition — and also for your wallet — all in the name of becoming "a business that has margins that [Disney] and [its] shareholders would really be proud of."

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