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Disney Plus users report massive crashes on launch day

The Walt Disney Company’s foray into streaming services is off with a few hitches
FILE - In this April 3, 2019, file photo characters from Disney and Fox movies are displayed behind Cathleen Taff, president of distribution, franchise management, business and audience insight for Walt Disney Studios during the Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures presentation at CinemaCon 2019, the official convention of the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. On Tuesday, Nov. 12, Disney Plus launches its streaming service. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File) [CHRIS PIZZELLO  |  Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP]
FILE - In this April 3, 2019, file photo characters from Disney and Fox movies are displayed behind Cathleen Taff, president of distribution, franchise management, business and audience insight for Walt Disney Studios during the Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures presentation at CinemaCon 2019, the official convention of the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. On Tuesday, Nov. 12, Disney Plus launches its streaming service. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File) [CHRIS PIZZELLO | Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP]
Published Nov. 12, 2019
Updated Nov. 12, 2019

As I write, it’s 10 a.m. on a Tuesday morning and Disney Plus, the new streaming service from the Walt Disney Company, is crashing.

I can’t watch the highly anticipated Disney Plus original The Mandalorian or any Star Wars content for that matter. The new Lady and the Tramp movie, nope. Disney’s Hercules? Can’t go the distance. I feel like Anger from the Pixar movie Inside Out.

Oh yeah, I can’t watch that either.

The streaming service, which is home to a massive collection of Disney content including everything Star Wars, Marvel, Pixar and Disney Channel-related, including classic Disney cartoons, went live early Tuesday. But by 7 a.m., users across social media platforms were reporting massive outages.

A heat map from Downdetector shows areas with the highest concentration of reported Disney Plus crashes on Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 [Downdetector]

By 9 a.m., Downdetector, a website that monitors outages for technology services, had received thousands of reports of connection issues. Most people were able to login and access menus, but nearly 80 percent of reported issues came from streaming services.

Some trying to watch reported a simple “Something went wrong. Please try again later,” message while others were greeted with an image of an excited Vanellope von Schweetz and a disappointed Wreck-It Ralph holding WiFi signals of contrasting strengths with a message stating a connection issue.

I couldn’t’ watch Wreck-It Ralph or its sequel either.

Just before 11 a.m., the Disney Plus Twitter account acknowledged the crash, saying: “The demand for #DisneyPlus has exceeded our highest expectations. We are so pleased you’re excited to watch all your favorites and are working quickly to resolve any current issues. We appreciate your patience.”

No other information was available and Disney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The service launched Tuesday after two years of planning and a $3 billion investment. The launch is expected to be a test for one of Disney CEO Bob Iger’s chief lieutenants and possible successors, Kevin Meyer. Meyer was named chairman of Disney’s direct-to-consumer and international division in March 2018.

At a preview event last week, Meyer said he’d been anxiously awaiting the Tuesday launch, sweating details beig and small to make sure it could handle tens of thousands of simultaneous online orders.

“We’ve worked extremely hard to create a service that’s second to none,” he said.

Most issues seemed to be resolved before noon.

Information from the Associated Press was used for this report.

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