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In the fall we wrote that ESPN's new streaming service named ESPN Plus would launch in Spring 2018.

ESPN has faced declining subscriber numbers and ad revenue. Like Comcast and Fox, Disney owns 30% and Fox's 30% is included in the deal - though some observershave wondered if Disney might either be forced by regulators to release it or choose to so as not to compete against itself.

Disney shares rose roughly 1.5% in after-hours trading.

The media and entertainment conglomerate reported adjusted earnings per share of $1.89 for October through December, ahead of the $1.61 analysts expected, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Iger also said the company is close to announcing the first Star Wars project and that "significant" talent is attached to the projects.

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Speaking to investors during Disney's afternoon earnings call on Tuesday, Iger made it clear that much was riding on the success of ESPN Plus.

Disney's studio revenue was $2.5 billion, missing the consensus estimate of $2.75 billion.

BAMTech, in which Disney acquired a majority stake late previous year, is building the "guts" of Disney's apps, Iger said, but editorial oversight is being handled by Disney. "Users will also enjoy an increasingly personalised experience as the app blends explicit choices with implicit behaviour to curate a unique mix of specific, relevant content tailored to the taste of each individual user".

Several of its segments missed the mark on the revenue front as well, including its media and networks branch, which raked in $6.24 billion. It will enhance our direct-to-consumer initiatives with platforms, technologies, brands and existing customer relationships to build on. However, those who do pay for cable will be able to access additional content on the streaming service, including live feeds of ESPN's cable broadcasts - after authenticating through your internet service provider, of course. That marked a 15 percent drop from the year-ago period, when the average was 1.75 million.

The Last Jedi, which has recently passed $1.32 billion worldwide, helped keep the Studio Entertainment results in line with past year, which had the added benefit of both Moana and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.


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