ESPN+ is going to be raising its price to $5.99 per month, starting in August. Which is kind of ironic seeing as there are very little sports on TV right now.
This is all according to internal documents that The Verge has gotten their hands on. ESPN+ has not yet announced the price hike, but since it's happening in August, it's going to be announced rather soon.
Existing subscribers will be grandfathered in, sort of
According to these documents, the price hike is only going to be in effect for the monthly fee. So if you buy it yearly, it'll still cost you $49.99.
The documents also reveal that existing subscribers can keep their $4.99 subscription cost for one year, before they will be switched to the new $5.99 price point.
It doesn't look like a big increase on the surface, but that is $12 extra per year that ESPN+ is going to be bringing in. And it's coming at a pretty bad time for the world. Considering we are all locked in this pandemic, and the fact that there are very little sports right now. Even in August, there won't be much sports available. Mostly just baseball, and the beginning of football – if we don't get caught in a second wave.
There's no word on whether the bundle with Disney+ and Hulu will go up. It is currently $12.99 per month right now – which gets you Disney+ ($6.99), Hulu ($5.99) and ESPN+ (currently $4.99).
ESPN+ doesn't actually have a lot of sports, or content
What's going to make this price increase even tougher for ESPN+ to really sell, is the fact that it doesn't have a lot of sports available on the streaming service. And the fact that there isn't a ton of other content either.
Right now, ESPN+ mostly has UFC content, after it invested pretty heavily in the UFC. It also carries all of its PPVs in the US. But outside of the UFC, there's very little sports content available. Typically, ESPN+ will get the games that aren't good enough to show on the regular ESPN channels, and those that other networks didn't pick up. This is particularly true with college football.
There is some original content available on ESPN+, but a lot of it is "coming soon". And yeah, this is only $6/month, which is still much cheaper than Netflix, it's going to be a hard sell for ESPN+. Unless you're a die-hard UFC or Boxing fan.