Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Photo: Disney

Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger said on the company's third quarter earnings call Thursday that Disney has reached a deal with Amazon to put Disney+ on Amazon Fire TV devices, as well as on Samsung and LG televisions.

Why it matters: A streaming distribution partnership between Amazon and Disney seemed uncertain after it was reported last month that the two companies were at odds over advertising terms. Amazon's Fire TV stick is the second-largest TV app distributor next to Roku. Disney needs that distribution outlet to hit its lofty subscriber goals.

Driving the news: Aside from the distribution deal, Iger made several other announcements about Disney+ leading up to its planned launch next Tuesday.

  • International launch: By March 31, Disney+ will launch in countries throughout Western Europe, including the U.K., France, Germany, Italy, Spain and others. The service will also launch in the U.S., Canada and the Netherlands next Tuesday.
  • Hulu and FX: Hulu will become the official streaming home for FX content. It will offer current and new FX series at the same time as they air on FX's linear television channel. FX will also produce new content exclusively for "FX on Hulu."
  • Bundle: The streaming bundle that the company is creating, a combination of Disney+, ESPN+ and Hulu with ads, will cost $12.99 monthly. That pricing is the same as Netflix's most popular $12.99 package.
  • ESPN+: Iger said that ESPN+, the company's subscription sports service, has reached 3.5 million paid subscribers in the 18 months since it launched last year.

The big picture: Disney's banking its future on its new streaming initiatives. Iger said at the top of his earnings call speech that the launch of Disney+ is the biggest corporate initiative in his 40+ year career at Disney.

Yes, but: While polling and analysis suggests that Disney will have a competitive advantage in the upcoming "streaming wars," its ambitious subscriber goals will be tested in coming months when competitive services begin to launch.

  • The company told investors in April that it expects to get 60 million to 90 million people to sign up for the service within five years.
  • The business has made several major investments in content and technology to hit those goals, most notably its $71.3 billion acquisition of most of 21st Century Fox last year, and the $1.58 billion deal for its remaining stake in BAMTech, a tech streaming service.
  • Disney will need to hit its subscription goals to recoup the losses from those investments over time.
  • Iger said that by its fifth year on the market, Disney+ will have 620 movies, 10,000+ TV episodes and 60+ original projects per year.

Our thought bubble: Where Disney will be most competitive is its content offering and competitive pricing. Disney+ costs less than Netflix and Amazon Prime and its bundled service will cost the same as Netflix's most popular subscription tier.

Expand chart
Data: Axios research; Chart: Axios Visuals

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Updated 25 mins ago - Health

California surpasses 50,000 COVID-19 deaths

A man prepares a funeral arrangement in in Los Angeles, California, Feb. 12. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

California's death toll from COVID-19 surpassed 50,000 on Wednesday, per Johns Hopkins data.

The big picture: It's the first state to record more than 50,000 deaths from the coronavirus.

2 hours ago - Technology

Facebook bans Myanmar military

A protester holds a placard with a three-finger salute in front of a military tank parked aside the street in front of the Central Bank building during a demonstration in Yangon, Myanmar. Photo by Aung Kyaw Htet/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Facebook said on Wednesday it would ban the rest of the Myanmar military from its platform.

The big picture: It comes some three weeks after the military overthrew the civilian government in a coup and detained leader Aung San Suu Kyi, causing massive protests to erupt throughout the country. Military leaders have been using internet blackouts to try to maintain power in light of the coup.

It's harder to fill the Cabinet

Data: Chamberlain, 2020, "United States of America Cabinet Appointments Dataset" Chart: Will Chase/Axios

It's harder now for presidents to win Senate confirmation for their Cabinet picks, an Axios data analysis of votes for and against nominees found.

Why it matters: It's not just Neera Tanden. The trend is a product of growing polarization, rougher political discourse and slimming Senate majorities, experts say. It means some of the nation's most vital federal agencies go without a leader and the legislative authority that comes with one.