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Did the former Disney CEO really just throw shade at Apple TV+?


Maybe, or maybe not. On the other hand, you could only actually watch one of those services on launch day.

Former Disney CEO Michael Eisner today did what one does on Twitter, whether you’re a billionaire, a president, a billionaire president — or just one of the peasants. He trolled. And it was a decent troll, at that, taking aim at the quality of content on Apple TV+ thus far on the same day that Disney+ launched..

Have seen all the original shows on @AppleTV’s new streaming service. One of them is great, two good, and one forget; and I’m not saying which. Good start for #Apple

— Michael Eisner (@Michael_Eisner) November 12, 2019

“Have seen all the original shows on @AppleTV’s new streaming service,” Eisner tweeted. “One of them is great, two good, and one forget; and I’m not saying which. Good start for #Apple”

And he’s not wrong. That’s about how I’d rate things as well. At first blush his tweet could well be taken as a trolling attempt. Apple’s definitely had a mixed bag of content — some good, some not so good. And adding insult to injury was the news that the head of scripted content for Apple TV+ has been “realigned.” (His job, anyway. Presuably he’s still in fine shape.)

But is he trolling Apple? Or praising Apple? Three out of four shows are more-than watchable. That’s a great batting average, to say nothing about success in the land of television, which is anything but a foregone conclusion.

There’s just one other additional problem: Apple TV+ launched just fine on Nov. 1. If you wanted to watch any of the four original series Apple had ready to go — The Morning Show, See, Dickinson and For All Mankind — you could.

Disney+, on the other hand, has something like a million shows and movies and series, some new originals, and many old favorites. But it also has had some serious issues when it comes not just to sign-ups, but also being able to stream shows if you’d preordered before launch day.

That’s no good, especially when you consider that Disney has spent the months since it announced Disney+ crowing about the technology behind the service. It purchased Bamtech, which also has sucessfully powered ESPN+ through a number of large live sporting events, and it now is the exclusive home to UFC PPV events.

The consumer demand for Disney+ has exceeded our high expectations. We are working to quickly resolve the current user issue. We appreciate your patience.

— Disney+ Help (@DisneyPlusHelp) November 12, 2019

So maybe we just take Eisner’s tweet for what it was: A reminder that good content is hard to create. But so, too, is the ability to push it out digitially to even just a few countries at one time in 2019.

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