|Headquarters||Calle de José Bardasano Baos, Madrid, Spain|
|Picture format||HDTV 1080i|
SDTV 576i 16:9 (downscaled)
|Owner||The Walt Disney Company Portugal|
|Parent||The Walt Disney Company Iberia S.L.|
Disney Branded Television (Disney Entertainment)
|Launched||November 28, 2001|
Disney Channel is a Spanish-managed Portuguese pay television channel, owned and operated by The Walt Disney Company Portugal. It was launched on 28 November 2001 as a premium channel, and it was later added to basic packages across platforms. It also broadcast through Angola and Mozambique via ZAP packages.
Disney Channel in Portugal was launched on November 28, 2001, as a premium channel exclusive to the Portuguese TV operator TV Cabo (later known as ZON and now known as NOS) and it was available at a price of €5.6 per month, although the channel would also become available by other operators in the following years, with variations in terms of its pricing.
It shares many characteristics with other international versions of the channel, for instance broadcasting Disney owned animated and live action series, the Playhouse Disney morning block and The Wonderful World of Disney night time block through which movies used to air, and also became the primary home of Portuguese television premieres of Disney's theatrical features.
Unlike other versions of the channel throughout Europe, Disney Channel in Portugal never had any original productions produced and made in the actual country excluding a Portuguese version of Art Attack hosted by Pedro Penim, later hosted by Salvador Nery in its revival. In addition to this, Toon Disney, Playhouse Disney or any time shift variants of Disney Channel were never launched as channels in Portugal likely as a result of Portugal having a significant small population compared with those of the UK, France or Spain.
A secondary Disney television channel would finally launch in Portugal as Disney Cinemagic on October 1, 2008, a premium channel dedicated to broadcasting for the most part Disney owned movies and some older Disney shows that had been discontinued from Disney Channel. It was also the first kids channel in Portugal to be available in high definition, with the HD feed launching at the beginning of 2009. Like Disney Channel, Disney Cinemagic was initially a channel exclusive to ZON, but it was eventually added to other operators. It was also around this time that Disney Channel begun to break away from its premium status and became for the most part a basic cable channel, with most of its premium characteristics, like the Portuguese television premieres of Disney films, moving to Disney Cinemagic.
However, Disney Cinemagic failed to attract enough of an audience, which lead to the channel being discontinued at the end of October 2012 and instead being replaced with a Portuguese version of Disney Junior as a channel, which until this point was only a morning block on Disney Channel ever since it replaced Playhouse Disney on June 1, 2011. Like its predecessors, Disney Junior was originally exclusive to ZON, but within less than a year became available on the other Portuguese TV operators, and after completing this on June 1, 2013, the Disney Junior block on Disney Channel was discontinued entirely, due to the existence of Disney Junior as a channel, which like Disney Channel, was mostly a basic cable channel.
Meanwhile, the Portuguese television premiere rights to subsequent Disney films, including productions from Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm, were instead transferred to ZON's own set of premium channels TVCine, previously known as Canais Lusomundo. This deal would be maintained until 2020 due to the launch of Disney+ in Portugal in September of the same year, with the final film to premiere being the 2019 remake of Aladdin on December 25, 2019, with subsequent Disney releases from Toy Story 4 going forward instead premiering directly on Disney+, although releases from 20th Century Studios would still premiere on the TVCine channels until 2021. Despite this, a select amount of movies from Touchstone Pictures and 20th Century Fox/20th Century Studios do occasionally air on the TVCine channels, albeit in a much more limited capacity.
Disney XD was also another channel that was absent in Portugal, although this was more a consequence of FOX Kids/Jetix never being launched in Portugal either. Instead certain Disney pop-up channels would occasionally appear on operator MEO during certain months, being usually themed around certain content absent from Disney Channel at the time. These would eventually be transferred to NOS in 2021, but would be discontinued entirely the following year in favor of bundles with Disney+ included from NOS. Due to absence of Disney XD, some Disney XD original shows, such as Lab Rats, Wander Over Yonder and Star vs. the Forces of Evil would instead just air on Disney Channel, although this lead to certain shows such as Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero never being released in Portugal.
Disney Channel airs some live action shows subtitled in Portuguese and others dubbed, animated series, short series, Disney XD (Spain), and films.
Since July 2013, most Disney Channel and Disney XD original shows are broadcast with dual audio channels, Portuguese or English, using MPEG2 and AAC standards, respectively.
As of October 2012, Disney Channel Portugal has disputed the leadership of subscription television ratings, in terms of daily average, with Canal Hollywood, finishing second for all but one week. However, it was the channel with most shows on the top 15 along the month, ranging from five to nine shows per week.
In 2017 Disney Channel was the most watched children's channel and the fourth most watched channel in Portugal.
Even in 2021, the channel still reaches usually, on a weekly basis, the top 15 most viewed channels in Portugal, and almost always keeps its place as the most viewed children's channel in the country. The channel ended 2021 being the 15th most watched channel in Portugal, but it began to decline in ratings in the following months being usually surpassed by Cartoon Network and even Disney Junior.