It seems the dreaded “skimpflation” is even making its way over to your beloved streaming services. Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+ are all seeing price hikes. Streaming services raising their prices and being modified to include new tiers is nothing new, but people really aren't too excited about this one. Before, Disney+ was a flat rate of $7.99. Now, that structure is changing.

Hulu might be one of the worst offenders out of any streaming service. Upon launch, it merely followed an ad-supported model. Shortly thereafter, it became a subscription-based service. After that, it split itself into tiers, including a cheaper ad-supported plan and a more expensive ad-free tier. Before the beginning of 2019, its live TV package was only $35 dollars. It lowered its pricing for the ad-supported tier but increased live TV to $40 dollars. Today, the live TV package comes in at a whopping $69.99 for Hulu with ads and live TV or $74.99 with no ads and live TV. The upcoming changes will bump the ad-supported plan to $7.99, while the ad-free tier goes from $12.99 to $14.99.

Unfortunately, the price of bundles is only going to go up, and Disney+ will see its own fragmentation. The baseline Disney+ service you enjoy now is going up to $10.99, but it'll be introducing an ad-supported model at $7.99, the current price of the service.  Even ESPN+ is seeing some changes, with prices being raised from $6.99 to $7.99.

Kareem Daniel, the head of Disney Media & Entertainment recently released a statement about the new pricing in a press release, saying:

With our new ad-supported Disney+ offering and an expanded lineup of plans across our entire streaming portfolio, we will be providing greater consumer choice at a variety of price points to cater to the diverse needs of our viewers and appeal to an even broader audience.

Unfortunately, it's unclear what that “choice” actually means outside of choosing to pay a higher price so you aren’t subjected to an advertisement at the beginning of each episode of your favorite shows. It doesn't seem like there’s an upside unless you really need to get the motivation to break out of a binge-watching session. New subscribers will see the price difference between plans and think they're getting a deal. People who have subscribed for a while might be a little upset.

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