Disney Star to add Indian sign language and audio descriptive feeds for ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024

Disney Star to add Indian sign language and audio descriptive feeds for ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024

Disney+ Hotstar also becomes the first OTT platform to make ISL available for LIVE cricket.

Disney Star

Mumbai: On the occasion of Global Accessibility Awareness Day, Disney Star in association with India Signing Hands (ISH), announces the availability of an Indian Sign Language (ISL) feed for the upcoming ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, starting 2 June. This will be applicable for 10 matches including the India matches, semi-finals and finals. The company will also support an audio descriptive feed, along with the ISL feed on Disney+ Hotstar and Star Sports Network. This is the first time that the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup will be broadcast with sign language and descriptive commentary making cricket more immersive for its deaf, hard-of-hearing and visually impaired users. With this, Disney+ Hotstar also becomes the first OTT platform to make ISL available for LIVE cricket.

Commenting on Disney Star’s initiative, government of India minister of Information & Broadcasting and Youth Affairs & Sports Anurag Singh Thakur said, “I commend Star Sports and Disney+ Hotstar for introducing Indian Sign Language and Audio Descriptive commentary during the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024. The Government of India is committed to creating an inclusive society and I strongly believe that this initiative will enhance the viewing experience for millions of differently abled sports enthusiasts.”

Disney+ Hotstar India head Sajith Sivanandan said, "We are thrilled to embrace accessibility features making the ICC Men's T20 World Cup available to more fans of the sport. This underscores our commitment to promote inclusivity and serve all users. With these enhancements, we aim to ensure that the excitement of cricket knows no bounds."

Disney Star head - Sports Sanjog Gupta said, “The descriptive and Indian sign language feeds on Star Sports during Tata IPL 2024 were met with an overwhelming response. Disney Star is extending this endeavour to make cricket fandom and experiences more inclusive by introducing, for the first time ever, these feeds on the ICC Men's T20 World Cup. Our mission of serving sports fans is powered by such pioneering initiatives which seek to remove barriers of access and engagement for fans from all walks of life. The initiative also serves to present a more inclusive picture of India's favourite sport and is of immense pride for the sporting fraternity."

India Signing Hands (ISH News) founder and CEO Alok Kejriwal said, “This feed has fostered the love of cricket into so many differently-abled individuals during IPL. With Disney Star continuing this initiative for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 at a larger scale with both Star Sports Network and Disney+ Hotstar supporting this feed, I am confident that it will open doors to the exciting world of cricket to many more people from the Deaf and Visually Impaired communities. This collaboration is really close to my heart since it makes the sport truly accessible and inclusive."

The ISL feed will provide a comprehensive ball-by-ball update through the presence of a translator on the live stream. The audio descriptive feed will be complemented by voice-over technology for specific pages, which can render text and images into a speech output, enabling our visually impaired users to easily navigate through the Disney+ Hotstar app.

According to the World Health Organization, with an estimated 63 million community of deaf and 40 million community of visually impaired individuals in India, the need for inclusive entertainment is undeniable. After successfully introducing these features for the 2024 season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) on Star Sports Network, Disney Star will make it available for all the India matches along with the semi-finals and finals of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup on both Disney+ Hotstar and Star Sports Network, giving its users the freedom to watch on either of the platforms, at the comfort of their homes or on-the-go.

Starting 2 June, tune in to Disney+ Hotstar to watch the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 LIVE and free on mobile. The tournament will also be broadcast LIVE on Star Sports Network.