ESPN Plus is get­ting a $1 price hike in August to $5.99 a month, mak­ing the base­line price for Disney’s sports stream­ing app the same as Hulu’s basic tier.

The price hike is only being applied to ESPN Plus’ month­ly fee, accord­ing to inter­nal doc­u­ments viewed by The Verge. The annu­al price of $49.99 will remain untouched. Exist­ing month­ly sub­scribers can keep the $4.99 sub­scrip­tion fee for a peri­od of one year before being switched to the $5.99 price point, doc­u­ments show. Dis­ney declined to com­ment to The Verge.

ESPN Plus launched in April 2018, car­ry­ing an assort­ment of col­lege games and var­i­ous sports leagues, albeit none of the big ones like NFL or NBA games. ESPN Plus has also car­ried UFC title match­es, which have per­formed well for the com­pa­ny. The app is housed in Disney’s main ESPN app.

Like Dis­ney Plus and Hulu, ESPN Plus is a core pil­lar of Disney’s stream­ing strat­e­gy. The app had 2.2 mil­lion sub­scribers in March 2019, but that num­ber grew to 7.9 mil­lion by March 2020. The growth came after Dis­ney launched a $12.99-a-month bun­dle that includ­ed ESPN Plus, Hulu, and Dis­ney Plus. The bun­dle price will not be affect­ed by the ESPN Plus month­ly price hike, either.

Disney’s exec­u­tive chair­man Bob Iger told Ringer’s Bill Sim­mons last year that while ESPN Plus is a good add-on strat­e­gy for peo­ple who already pay for ESPN, and it’s “grow­ing nice­ly,” the actu­al ser­vice is still “rel­a­tive­ly small.” At the time, Iger said because the tra­di­tion­al ESPN net­work via lin­ear pay TV was “still deliv­er­ing a fair amount of prof­itabil­i­ty to ESPN,” mak­ing the piv­ot to a stream­ing-exclu­sive world was dif­fi­cult. Not to men­tion that piv­ot­ing to a stream­ing-exclu­sive strat­e­gy would require agree­ments with var­i­ous sports leagues, who are still firm­ly in the land of pay TV.

It’s unclear why Dis­ney is hik­ing the price up now, espe­cial­ly con­sid­er­ing sports are still large­ly not being played. The NBA and MLB are set to return in the com­ing days and weeks, but it’s unclear if any of those games will stream on ESPN Plus.

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