Airtel and Reliance Jio recently started offering prepaid plans with a complimentary annual subscription to Disney+ Hotstar in India. Hotstar is a popular OTT platform in India thanks to its vast catalogue of regional content and exclusive streaming rights to cricket matches and other sports. The merging of Disney+ has added a whole bunch of Disney shows and movies to its roster as well, which are also available dubbed in Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.
While Hotstar does offer free content, you need to pay to access live sports, Disney and Premium-branded content. If you don’t want to shell out for a subscription, there are ways to get one for free via your telecom operator. To know which plans offer a subscription to Disney+ Hotstar, how to avail one and more, read on.
Disney Plus Hotstar: available plans in India
- Disney+ Hotstar VIP plan annual plan: Rs 399, one device at a time for Premium content
- Disney+ Hotstar Premium monthly plan: Rs 299, one device at a time for Premium content
- Disney+ Hotstar Premium annual plan: Rs 1,499, one device at a time for Premium content
What is the Disney Plus Hotstar streaming service?
Hotstar is an Indian digital and mobile entertainment platform, which was launched by Star India back in 2015. Star India itself is part of 21st Century Fox, which was acquired by Walt Disney last year. This effectively brought Hotstar under the ownership of Walt Disney.
Following the acquisition, the Disney+ platform was integrated with Hotstar, and rebranded as Disney+ Hotstar in March this year. This has resulted in Disney+ content being available in India, including titles from Walt Disney Pictures, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar, Lucasfilm, Marvel Studios, National Geographic, and films from 20th Century Studios, Hollywood Pictures, Searchlight Pictures, and Touchstone Pictures.
Disney Plus Hotstar: exclusive content
Hotstar already had a good content library in India, including exclusive shows from HBO, Showtime and HOOQ. The platform also has live streaming rights for sports events like cricket, Premier League and Formula 1.
With the integration of Disney+, subscribers will now get access to new and upcoming content from Marvel and Star Wars franchises, including WandaVision, Loki, The Mandalorian and more. All Pixar films, including the Toy Story series, Monsters Inc, Finding Nemo and more are also available to stream, in addition to Pixar Originals and Pixar Shorts. Disney content includes original live action movies like Maleficent, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Princess Diaries and Mary Poppins, to name a few. Needless to say, Disneys animated films, including Frozen, The Jungle Book, Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, Aladdin and more are also available.
Disney Plus Hotstar: available plans in India
While Hotstar offers a host of free content, Disney+ content is only available for VIP and Premium subscribers. As part of the VIP subscription, users get access to Hotstar Originals, Star network content including the Indian Premier League, ICC Cricket World Cup, Indian TV shows, new Indian movie premieres and Exclusive Hotstar specials like Special OPS, Hundred, Criminal Justice, and more. All the Disney+ content offered in the VIP subscription is available only in dubbed languages such as Hindi, Tamil and Telugu as of now.
The VIP plan is priced at Rs 399 for an annual subscription and offers all content except for American shows and movies.
In case you want to watch American shows and movies, you will have to upgrade to Premium membership. This plan retails for Rs 1,499 annually or Rs 299 monthly. You get access to the entire library of the Disney+ Hotstar platform in all languages, live sports, as well as latest American TV shows and Hollywood blockbusters with a Premium subscription.
Disney Plus Hotstar: Jio recharge plans
Reliance Jio has announced a monthly and annual prepaid plan worth Rs 401 and Rs 2,599 with a free annual VIP subscription of Disney+ Hotstar. The former offers 90GB data, unlimited voice calling benefits and complimentary access to Jio apps valid for 28 days, while the latter provides 740GB data, 365 days access to Jio apps and unlimited calling. It’s worth noting that for the user to continue getting the free membership, they need to continuously be on any active Jio plan.
Jio is also offering the same Disney+ subscription plan with data add-on packs in denominations of Rs 1,004, Rs 1,206, Rs 1,208 and Rs 612. The Rs 612 plan has the same validity as the base plan of the user and provides 72GB data as well as 6,000 minutes Jio to non-Jio calling minutes. The Rs 1,206 and Rs 1,208 plans come with 240GB data each for 240 days and 180 days, respectively. Lastly, the Rs 1,004 pack offers 200GB data for 120 days.
Disney Plus Hotstar: Airtel recharge plans
Before Jio, it was Airtel that offered a Rs 401 prepaid plan for its users with an annual VIP subscription worth Rs 399. Apart from the Disney+ Hotstar subscription, users also get 30GB of data for 28 days. However, unlike the Jio plan, there are no calling benefits included in this pack.
The telco is also offering Rs 448, Rs 499, Rs 599 and Rs 2,698 prepaid plans with one year of Disney+ Hotstar VIP subscription. The Rs 448 prepaid plan is meant for the existing users while the Rs 499 prepaid plan is a first recharge plan, which means it’s available only to new subscribers. Both plans offer unlimited 3GB data per day, voice calls, and 100 SMS every day for 28 days.
The Rs 599 and Rs 2,698 plans come with a validity of 56 days and 365 days, respectively. Both plans offer 2GB data per day, unlimited voice calling and 100 SMS per day.
Does Disney Plus Hotstar support Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound?
Disney+ Hotstar rolled out support for Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound back in April, however, it was limited to the Disney+ exclusive show The Mandalorian. The feature was rolled out to the Disney+ Hotstar app on Apple TV and Fire TV. While there were talks of the feature being extended to other titles, there’s been no news since.
Disney Plus Hotstar vs Netflix vs Amazon Prime Video
As mentioned before, Disney+ Hotstar offers content from the Walt Disney group, HBO, ABC Studios and Showtime. Additionally, it offers regional content like movies and shows, Indian TV shows from Star India and live sports streaming for events such as IPL, Premier League, and Grand Slams.
Titles like Game of Thrones, Big Little Lies, Grey’s Anatomy, Chernobyl, His Dark Materials, Star Wars franchise, Avengers franchise, all Disney and Pixar films are exclusive to Disney+ Hotstar. And if you are a fan of these titles, you will benefit from subscribing to the VIP (Rs 399 annually) or Premium (Rs 1,499 annual or Rs 299 monthly) plans.
In comparison, Amazon Prime Video offers licensed content from NBC (Blindspot, The Office US), ITV (Downton Abbey) and CBS (Blue Bloods, 2 Broke Girls). Amazon Originals like Paatal Lok, Family Man, Jack Ryan and more are also part of the package. Apart from that, the platform has a rich library of Indian regional content. The service can be availed for just Rs 129 monthly or Rs 999 yearly fee. This is considerably cheaper than Disney+ Hotstar subscription fee, and also includes to free and priority deliveries with Amazon Prime, plus access to Amazon Music.
As for Netflix, subscriptions start at Rs 199 per month (mobile/tablet only, single screen, Standard Definition). The other plans are priced at Rs 499 per month (one screen at a time, Standard Definition), Rs 649 per month (two screens at a time, up to full HD resolution) and Rs 799 per month (four screens at a time, up to 4K resolution). Netflix also has a broad catalogue of exclusive Netflix Specials and licensed content from NBC and ABC. These include Sacred Games, She, Delhi Crime, Made In Heaven, Orange is the New Black, Stranger Things, Brooklyn Nine-Nine and more.
Disney Plus Hotstar pricing and plans
|Disney+ Hotstar Plan||Price||Number of devices||Validity|
|Disney+ Hotstar VIP plan||Rs 399||1 device at a time for Premium content||1 year|
|Disney+ Hotstar Premium monthly plan||Rs 299||1 device at a time for Premium content||1 month|
|Disney+ Hotstar Premium annual plan||Rs 1,499||1 device at a time for Premium content||1 year|