Disney To Offer Free Online Episodes

Disney is branching into broadband kids programming, delivering full episodes of  shows like That’s So Raven, The Suite Life of Zack & Cody, Kim Possible online. 

This spring, Disney Channel and Jetix, the action-adventure block on Toon Disney, will relaunch their existing web sites in broadband form, Disney said Thursday.

In doing so, Disney is taking a different approach from its main competitor in the TV kids market, Nickelodeon, which in July launched broadband site TurboNick as a separate entity from the network’s web site, Nick.com.

This spring, DisneyChannel.com and Jetix.tv will launch the first stage of their broadband conversion by offering free episodes of series including That’s So Raven, The Suite Life of Zack & Cody, Kim Possible, Power Rangers and Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go!.

The sites, updated weekly, will also offer short-form content video, music videos, and bonus features from Disney Channel original movies. Eventually, Disney will further expand its broadband sites with games and home pages that kids can personalize.

Both sites will be ad supported, with programs introduced by streaming video ads, and running adjacent to fixed ads, such as banners. Toon Disney, which programs Jetix, is ad-supported, available in some 51 million homes. Disney Channel, available in some 87 million homes, is not ad supported.