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About 4 Hours After the Disney+ Launch, Problems

In the form of error pages and more
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 12, 2019 1:25 PM CST
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...   (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)

(Newser) – The debut was flawed, but not without ... humor? People looking to start streaming shows on the launched-on-Tuesday Disney+ found themselves staring at error pages explaining there was a problem connecting to the Disney+ service. The pages showed an image of Wreck-It Ralph in one case and Mickey Mouse and Pluto dressed as "forlorn astronauts" in another, reports CNN. The humor was in fuller force on Twitter, with New York Times reporter Dave Itzkoff riffing off Aladdin with the tweet, "PHENOMENAL COSMIC LIBRARY/itty bitty server capacity." The AP reports the issues began about four hours after the $7-a-month service's 3am launch, with outage-tracker downdetector.com reporting more than 8,000 instances of problems.

The Hollywood Reporter gets much more specific on those issues: trouble signing up, the inability to log in, problems loading on smart TVs, some unavailable titles (including under the Star Wars umbrella), and 30-second-plus load times when things did work. Disney blamed the hiccup on "consumer demand" that surpassed its already "high expectations" and said it was working on the issue. One unrelated pain point, via the Verge: It notes that the Simpsons episodes available for streaming are only shown at a 16:9 aspect ratio—meaning the first 20 seasons, which were broadcast in a 4:3 ratio, seem stretched, and some "gags ... don't land because the cropping prevents the joke from being fulfilled." (Read more Disney Plus stories.)

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