Apple TV+ and Disney+ won’t let you binge watch

Apple TV+, coming this fall, is the new home for the world’s most celebrated creative artists
Apple TV+, coming this fall, is the new home for the world’s most celebrated creative artists

Apple and Disney aren’t on board with Netflix-style binge-watching.

Adam Levy for The Motley Fool:

Netflix completely changed the way we consume television shows. Instead of waiting for a new episode every week, binge-watching three or four episodes or even an entire season of a series is now a weekly event in many homes… [But] Disney’s planning to release episodes for its Disney+ originals on a weekly schedule. Hulu, of which Disney owns a majority share and full operational control, releases three episodes to premiere a series before releasing new episodes weekly. Apple is considering the same release schedule for Apple TV+.

Releasing episodes over the course of a couple of months can help produce a more stable subscriber base. Prospective subscribers can’t just sign up, binge a season, and cancel until the next release. With any luck, Apple and Disney will have a steady pipeline of hit series that keeps subscribers discovering something new by the time the last series run ends. Limiting the availability of new episodes also encourages subscribers to explore what else is available on the services.

MacDailyNews Take: It also allows for a free trial period for both Disney+ and Apple TV+ where entire seasons of TV series cannot be consumed within the trial period for free.


  1. Will it make a big difference ? Alot of people I know don’t binge a series the moment it “airs”, they wait until they have the time etc. So these people will wait for the season to be over and then binge it.

  2. This doesn’t prevent binge watching. It only prevents binge watching as soon as a show/season comes out.

    I personally think Netflix is missing out on a lot of good PR with its strategy.
    HBO has so much buzz going the entire season of Game of Thrones (I don’t watch it myself, but I hear a LOT of buzz around from people who do).

    I’m glad Apple and Disney are going with the weekly release model. If any of those shows get popular (the Mandalorian has a decent chance) then it could create a LOT of buzz around the show (and therefore Disney+) for months.

    Sounds pretty smart to me.

    1. It’s the 21st century. We want to view what we want, when we want, and how we want. No one is gathering round the TV with mom knitting and dad smoking the pipe anymore. Forcing me to wait a week for an episode you already have in the can is just another reason for me to not subscribe. If Apple happens to have something I’d like to see, I’ll wait until the entire series is available, then subscribe long enough to watch the whole thing, then cancel my subscription.

  3. I’m fine with bingeing (aa Netflix) or releasing one show a week (ala Hulu). Where I have an issue is (ala CW or Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D Season 6) where the oldest shows of a new season are inexplicably scrubbed. I spent June overseas. While I was away ABC released Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D Season 6 except by the time I got to Hulu I could only start with S06E06. It’s kind of pointless to miss the first five episodes. Therefore I had to go to the PirateBay just to watch a show I had otherwise paid for.

  4. “Prospective subscribers can’t just sign up, binge a season, and cancel until the next release.”

    Oh really? Unless you suffer from extreme instant gratification, you just wait for the season to conclude, sign up, binge watch the series and unsubscribe. It can still be done, only you have to wait for the series to finish (for that season).

  5. I binge watched Star Trek Discovery. Waited until the season ended and watched it over a month. then rematched the entire series the next month. No way that I am paying CBS $10 a month for the whole show season. Would not watch it any other way. CBS is better off getting $20 from me than nothing.

  6. Booo, hissss. Customers don’t want to be prevented from watching at their own pace, in their own way. The Netflix model is perfect. I have HBO for free for life from my AT&T unlimited cell plan, so I do watch some shows, but less than Netflix. Frankly, though, I’m burned out on ALL of the streaming apps and cable TV. If not for others in my household, I would cancel Netflix and live without ANY TV except free HBO.

    The whole TV experience from purchasing, to using, to owning on an ongoing basis is broken. I’m becoming skeptical of Apple’s ability to make a good experience and business out of this. Time will tell.

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