On the company quarterly earnings call Today, Disney CEO Bob Iger said that the previously announced standalone ESPN streaming service will arrive by the fall of 2025. The company already applied for the serviceAs Iger explained, ESPN will offer a “full suite” of networks as a streaming option, but no general release date or any additional details have been announced.
Iger said the stand-alone ESPN offering would serve up live games and studio programming currently available on many cable channels. In addition, the service will provide access to ESPN Bet and fantasy sports, along with detailed statistics and shopping. Of course, all of this includes “healthy personalization,” according to Iger.
These new details come a day after Disney announced a partnership with Fox and Warner Brothers Discovery an integrated sports streaming service this fall. The as-yet-unnamed selection will include games from the NFL, MLB, NHL and NBA via channels including ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, SECN, ACCN, ESPNEWS, ABC, FOX, FS1, FS2, BTN, TNT, TBS. truTV and ESPN. No word yet on pricing, but subscribers will be able to bundle it with their existing Disney+, Hulu, and Max subscriptions. This means you’ll actually be able to stream ESPN networks without a cable or other live TV subscription before Disney’s standalone service launches. However, the combination effort is sure to be more expensive because it includes all of Fox and Warner Brothers Discovery’s additional channels.
Disney already offers ESPN+ as a cable alternative. The service makes live games available for streaming, but does not provide access to the action as it is broadcast on ESPN networks. That’s why ESPN+ complements its cable channels, but Disney has yet to say how its services will be available after next fall.
Independent ESPN will also be available on Disney+ for bundled subscribers, just as the company does with Hulu. There’s no word yet on pricing for the new iteration of ESPN, but Disney has plenty of time between now and fall 2025 to launch the service. Iger said the price “will be more attractive” than a typical cable set.