According to a recent study by Ampere Analysis, a combined offering of Disney+ and Hulu would comprise the largest share of the 100 most popular titles of any U.S. SVOD service.
At approximately 30 percent, the combined player would enjoy a comprehensive lead on Netflix’s 23 percent. Among these titles are shows from Disney’s Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm and Hulu originals like Only Murders in the Building and The Handmaid’s Tale.
Disney’s share of Hulu content has grown significantly, suggesting that the company has continued to invest considerably in the platform. Since September 2016, the proportion of Hulu’s catalog to which Disney owns the distribution rights has tripled, from 6 percent of all movies and TV shows to 19 percent by September 2022.
The major studios without streaming platforms, meanwhile, have reduced their contribution to Hulu’s content slate—from 81 percent in 2016 to 71 percent in 2022. Those with their own streaming services have generally maintained or reduced their input. The combined content from NBCUniversal, Paramount Global and Warner Bros. Discovery now makes up less than 10 percent of all TV shows and movies on Hulu. If major studios continue to reclaim their proprietary content, Hulu could lose 10 percent of its overall catalog. This rises to 37 percent of Hulu’s 100 most popular titles, using Ampere’s Popularity Score metric, which tracks overall online engagement with a title.
Christen Tamisin, analyst at Ampere Analysis, said: “The threat of further popular or critically acclaimed titles leaving Hulu for rival platforms is a concern as engaging content is critical for subscriber retention, especially as the U.S. SVOD market nears saturation. This risk makes the argument for Disney to merge Hulu and Disney+ into a single platform stronger.
“On the other hand, Disney+ and Hulu’s complementary catalogs mean a combined platform would have a more diverse content offering—akin to other major market players—than the two standalone platforms have currently. While the Disney brand has long been associated with family-friendly content, Hulu has a broader, general-audience appeal, offering a wide range of genres and more adult-targeted titles.”