Disney+ Hotstar in India is implementing new measures to curb password sharing among its premium users. Going forward, premium users will only be able to access their accounts on a maximum of four devices. This decision comes in response to the growing concern of password sharing, which has been a common practice among users. In a similar vein, Netflix has also taken steps to address this issue by notifying subscribers in over 100 countries that additional charges will be incurred for sharing the service. These efforts reflect the streaming platforms’ commitment to protecting their content and ensuring fair usage among users.
In India, Disney Hotstar’s premium streaming service currently allows logins on up to 10 devices, despite the website indicating a limit of four devices.
However, the company has conducted internal tests to enforce this policy, which is expected to be implemented later this year. The aim is to restrict logins to a maximum of four devices for premium accounts, addressing concerns about excessive device sharing.
According to Reuters, the implementation of this measure may incentivize some users to purchase their own subscriptions. Initially, Disney adopted a lenient approach to the four-device login policy, hoping to attract subscribers who might start by accessing the service through password sharing and eventually transition to buying their own accounts.
In India, Disney, along with streaming giants like Netflix and Amazon, as well as Mukesh Ambani’s JioCinema, has gained significant popularity. The Indian streaming market is projected to reach $7 billion by 2027, according to Media Partners Asia.
Hotstar holds a leading position in India, boasting around 50 million users, according to industry data cited by Reuters. The company refrained from strictly enforcing the four-device login policy to avoid inconveniencing its premium users, as only about 5% of them were logging in from more than four devices, as per internal findings.
The upcoming restriction on device logins will also apply to Disney Hotstar’s cheaper plan, limiting its usage to two devices, Reuters reported.
From January 2022 to March 2023, Disney’s Hotstar dominated India’s streaming market with a significant 38% share of viewership, as reported by research firm Media Partners Asia.
Additionally, Walt Disney is reportedly exploring options to sell or find a joint venture partner for its India digital and TV business, according to a source familiar with the matter.
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