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"I'm pretty optimistic about the ability for this thing to work. Particularly when you make it accessible because of the content we're putting on, because of the user interface and because of the price," CEO Bob Iger told CNBC's David Faber in an interview Thursday.
Shares of Disney surged 11.5% on Friday, its best single day of trading since May 2009. Netflix shares traded lower by 4.5%.
Disney+ will roll out in the U.S. on November 12, and within the next two years, the platform will be available "in nearly all major regions of the world." The pricing on the ad-free service is surprisingly low — $6.99 per month and $69.99 annually (or $5.83 per month). That's lower than Netflix, which raised prices on its standard plan from $10.99 to $12.99 per month. Netflix's basic plan is $8.99 a month.
"Disney surprised on the upside at its investor meeting yesterday, providing more financial disclosure and revealing a more content rich streaming service than previously expected," J.P. Morgan analyst Alexia Quadrani said in a note to investors. "In addition, management provided a target for Disney+ of 60m-90m subscribers by F2024, on the higher end of our expectations, which we believe were already above consensus."
Disney+ will also have multiple movies and TV series that are exclusive to the service. Those include several series from Marvel and Star Wars. Disney said it expects it will spend about $1 billion in 2020 on original content for the platform and $2 billion by 2024.
Disney's stock closed at $116.60 a share on Thursday.