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New streaming app from Fox, Disney, WBD is about more than sports

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Gleyber Torres, Aaron Judge, and Didi Gregorious playing for the Yankees in 2019.

Enlarge / Gleyber Torres, Aaron Judge, and Didi Gregorius playing for the Yankees in 2019, when Yankees games were easier to track down.

Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD), and Fox plan to launch an app together this fall, the companies announced Tuesday. The unnamed app will unite the sports offerings of the three media conglomerates, including their reported 85 percent ownership of US sports rights. The app could simplify things for sports fans while signaling a bundled future for streaming services—which could ultimately prove good or bad for subscribers.

The new app will give subscribers access to ESPN+ and various linear channels that show live sports, including ABC, Fox, TNT, TBS, truTV, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPNEWS, FS1, FS2, SECN, ACCN, and BTN. The companies' announcement promised access to "thousands of events" through the app, including from the NFL, NBA, WNBA, MLB, and NHL, as well as PGA, Wimbledon, UFC, and Formula 1 events, the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, the FIFA World Cup, and college sports. An anonymous person "familiar with the matter" told Variety that the app won't make original content.

People will be able to bundle the sports app with Disney-owned streaming services Disney+ and Hulu, as well as with WBD's Max streaming app. The upcoming app will particularly target "those outside of the traditional pay TV bundle," the announcement said.

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