Disney XD is an American pay television channel which is owned by the Walt Disney Television unit of The Walt Disney Company through Disney Channels Worldwide. Aimed primarily at children ages 6–15, its programming consists of original first-run television series, current and former original series and made-for-TV films from sister network Disney Channel, theatrically-released films, and acquired programs from other distributors, including Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon and Beyblade Burst, along with a primetime block of programming involving competitive gaming.
The channel offers an alternate Spanish-language audio feed, either via a separate channel with the English track removed as part of a package of Spanish-language television networks sold by subscription providers or a separate audio track accessible through the SAP option, depending on the provider.
As of January 2016, Disney XD is available to 77.5 million households in the United States.
Disney XD was launched on February 13, 2009 at 12:00 a.m. Eastern Time, with the Phineas and Ferb episode "Dude, We're Getting the Band Back Together" being the first show to air on the channel. The channel debuted its first original series, Aaron Stone, at 7:00 p.m. New animated series included in the channel's initial lineup were Kid vs. Kat and Jimmy Two-Shoes.
The network took over the channel space of Toon Disney, an animation-focused channel that debuted on April 18, 1998, which eventually launched a live-action/animation block called Jetix in 2004. Jetix channels outside of the United States were relaunched under the Disney XD banner starting with the France-based service on April 1, 2009. Many of the channel's programs – particularly animated series – previously aired on Toon Disney, mainly as part of the Jetix programming block, which ran on Toon Disney until that channel's shutdown. Disney XD carries the same name as an unrelated mini-site and media player on Disney.com, which stood for Disney Xtreme Digital, though it has been stated[by whom?] that the "XD" in the channel's name does not have an actual meaning.
The channel's first original television movie, Skyrunners, premiered on November 27, 2009. On April 1, 2012, Disney XD launched a block called "Marvel Universe", as a result of Disney's 2009 acquisition of Marvel Entertainment. By June 2014, Disney XD agreed to a multi-picture development deal with Two 4 the Money and MarVista Entertainment with MarVista having global rights.
On November 17, 2016, it was announced that the Pokémon anime series would be moving to Disney XD from its previous broadcaster, Cartoon Network. The twentieth season, Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon, was the first season to air and was first broadcast as a sneak peek on December 5, 2016. Pokémon began its regular broadcast on May 12, 2017.
On August 12, 2017, Disney XD premiered a reboot of DuckTales. In 2018, through a series of promos and news announcements, Disney announced that four of Disney XD's most popular original series, Star vs. the Forces of Evil, Milo Murphy's Law, DuckTales, and Big Hero 6: The Series, would be moving their premieres over to Disney Channel, while Disney XD would continue to air re-runs.
Disney XD's schedule consists largely of animated and live-action programs aimed at pre-teens and young teenagers. Disney XD content is a mixture of original series as well as programs inherited from sister network Disney Channel. In addition to full-length live-action and animated original series, the channel also debuts short series similar to those seen on Disney Channel during commercial breaks (such as Two More Eggs), which serve as filler for programs scheduled to end during the half-hour and last usually around one to three minutes.
New episodes of original series are usually aired at 7:00AM (ET). In addition, Disney XD airs original made-for-TV movies from Disney Channel and theatrically released feature films, but unlike Disney Channel, Disney XD typically does not air these movies in prime time; instead, films generally air during the early evening hours at 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time with double features airing a few times a week.
Unlike Disney Channel (and similarly, fellow sister network Disney Junior)—whose advertising comes in the form of program promotions, underwriter sponsorships, and interstitials for Disney films, home video, and game releases produced by the channel—Disney XD operates as an advertiser-supported service running traditional television commercials in addition to promotions for the channel's shows.
The channel also airs a youth-oriented "plays of the week" countdown segment called SportsCenter High-5, which is produced by ESPN's SportsCenter and airs periodically between shows. On January 27, 2019, the 2019 Pro Bowl aired on Disney XD, with the event becoming the first long-form sporting event that the network ever aired (it was also simulcast on ESPN, ESPN Deportes, and ABC).
|Disney XD HD||Disney XD HD is a high definition simulcast of the Disney XD channel that broadcasts in the 720p resolution; the HD feed launched with the standard definition feed of the channel on February 13, 2009. Disney XD's original programming is produced and broadcast in HD, along with feature films, Disney Channel original movies made after 2005 and select episodes, films and series produced before 2009. The HD feed is carried through most providers, excluding Dish.|
|Disney XD On Demand||Disney XD On Demand is the channel's video-on-demand service, offering select episodes of Disney XD's original series and certain acquired programs to pay television providers.|
|Disney XD App||Formerly known as "WATCH Disney XD" until a June 2016 rebranding, the mobile app and digital media player apps for Disney XD offer live and on-demand streaming of Disney XD content online. These apps require users to authenticate with a login from a participating television service provider for access to live video or the newest episodes of a series, though a limited selection of free episodes also are available without a login. The app closed on February 15, 2018.|
|DisneyNOW||On September 28, 2017, the Disney Channel app was relaunched as DisneyNOW, which combines the apps of Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Disney XD and Radio Disney into one universal app featuring access to all four services. The Disney XD app was discontinued on February 15, 2018.|
As of January 6, 2019, Disney XD was closed down in Australia and New Zealand with the shows moving to Disney Channel. In India, the channel was rebranded as Marvel HQ on January 9, 2019. Ten months later, on October 1, 2019 Disney XD announced its closure of broadcasts in Italy.