YouTube TV app's Disney channel woes could be great news for subscribers

YouTube TV
(Image credit: OpturaDesign/Shutterstock)

Google's YouTube TV service could potentially lose out on Disney channels this week, as the current agreement between the two companies expires on December 17, 2021. This means that YouTube TV subscribers could very well lose access to the range of Disney channels currently available on the streaming service.

There is a silver lining for subscribers, though. As reported by Android Authority, Google has confirmed that the loss of the YouTube TV app's selection of Disney channels would decrease the monthly subscription cost by $15.

"If Disney offers us equitable terms, we'll renew our agreement with them,” an official YouTube blog post stated. "However, if we are unable to reach a deal by Friday, the Disney-owned channels will no longer be available on YouTube TV and we will decrease our monthly price by $15, from $64.99 to $49.99."

It's proving quite a rocky month for Google, who threatened to remove the YouTube app from the Roku platform entirely after the latter accused Google of anticompetitive practices. Fortunately, Roku and Google were able to make amends, and the YouTube and YouTube TV apps were returned to the Roku Channel store after an agreement was reached.

However, the fact that Google is willing to drop the monthly price of YouTube TV to $49.99 is commendable, and demonstrates some fairness to viewers even amid failing negotiations. Subscribers would be missing out on some excellent channels if a deal isn't reached, such as ESPN, National Geographic, FX and many more.

The blog post added that the YouTube TV price drop would only be in effect so long as its range of Disney-owned channels remained absent from the subscription service. It sounds like Google will continue to actively seek a deal with Disney even after it expires, then, which is understandable – though it's possible those channels won't return.

Google is actually recommending subscribers also sign up to Disney's own bundle to make sure they get their usual services. This $13.99 a month package includes several channels being cut from YouTube TV including ESPN, but the bundle also includes Disney Plus and Hulu, too.

Rhys Wood
Hardware Editor

Rhys is TRG's Hardware Editor, and has been part of the TechRadar team for more than two years. Particularly passionate about high-quality third-party controllers and headsets, as well as the latest and greatest in fight sticks and VR, Rhys strives to provide easy-to-read, informative coverage on gaming hardware of all kinds. As for the games themselves, Rhys is especially keen on fighting and racing games, as well as soulslikes and RPGs.