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Topic: Latest: Disney Officially Debuts MyMagic+ (NextGen) With an Announcement from Tom Staggs

Mon 1/7/2013 3:27a
This topic is for Discussion of Latest: Disney Officially Debuts MyMagic+ (NextGen) With an Announcement from Tom Staggs

Fans have been talking about Disney's NextGen for many months as it has slowly rolled out around Walt Disney World with various tests like interactive queues and FastPass+. Today, on the Official Disney Parks Blog, Parks and Resorts Chairman Tom Staggs for the first time officially announces MyMagic+ and some of what it entails. 

Mon 1/7/2013 3:48a
There's also a New York Times article ( this morning with more interesting info including:

* The initiative is part of a broader effort, estimated by analysts to cost between $800 million and $1 billion

* Before, the employee playing Cinderella could say hello only in a general way. Now — if parents opt in — hidden sensors will read MagicBand data, providing information needed for a personalized greeting: “Hi, Angie,” the character might say without prompting. “I understand it’s your birthday.”

* A new Magic Kingdom ride called Under the Sea, for instance, features a robotic version of Scuttle the sea gull from “The Little Mermaid” that will be able to chitchat with MagicBand wearers.

* Guests will not be forced to use the MagicBand system, and people who do try it will decide how much information to share. An online options menu, for instance, will offer various controls: Do you want park employees to know your name? Do you want Disney to send you special offers when you get home? What about during your stay?

* What happens if your MagicBand is lost or stolen? Park employees will be trained to deactivate them or guests can use the My Disney Experience app, a Disney spokeswoman said. As a safety precaution, Disney will also require guests to enter a PIN when using the wristbands to make purchases of $50 or more. “The bands themselves will contain no personal identifiable information,” Mr. Staggs said.

* Mr. Staggs said Disney’s board decided to move ahead with the technology upgrades in February 2011 only after identifying multiple ways in which the initiative could expand profits

* Disney expects MagicBands to turn into a big business in and of themselves; the company plans to introduce collectible sets of MagicBand accessories and charms.

* Prodding guests to do more advance planning, combined with the tracking of guests as they roam the parks, will help Disney manage its work force more efficiently. More advance planning will also help lock visitors into Disney once they arrive in Orlando, discouraging people, for instance, from making impromptu visits to Universal’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
Kennesaw Tom
Mon 1/7/2013 6:01a
I think the MagicBands will be a good thing. But, from what has been posted above, there is no way to determine if you have to be staying on property, and at a Disney resort, in order to get a MagicBand. Will the MagicBands be made available to all park guests? Will they be available to only guests staying on property, but those also staying at non-Disney hotels as well? What about guests staying at Shades of Green?

I didn't read the entire article. But, there are still at lot of questions everyone has regarding NextGen and MagicBands in general. And, the Disney Company doesn't seem to be that forthcoming with the truth or specific information. It really gives guests and potential guests the inpression that Disney's management is making this up as they go.

I would be very pleased if the MagicBands replaced FastPasses. It would significantly cutdown on the self induced paper trash and trash removal within WDW's parks.
Mon 1/7/2013 6:16a
Ultimately, as best as I can tell from all I've heard, the Magic Bands will be available to everyone (including Annual Passholders and Cast Members). The early tests will of course be for WDW property guests. But the plan is for everyone to have access to them.
Mon 1/7/2013 6:35a
Everyone will have access to them, but everyone will not get the same treatment.

Onsite guests get priority for booking FP+, dining, fireworks, etc.

APs will get 20 FP+ per quarter.
Mon 1/7/2013 7:49a
The Magicband thing alone sounds very interesting. At first glance, my problem was the Passholder aspect, especially since you only recieve a certain amount of Fastpasses per quarter, but I use probably only 10 each quarter it's not that bad.

I love the personalized aspect of this. Will really be fun when it comes time for 1st visit kids to have the characters know their name.
Mon 1/7/2013 7:52a
I'm not a fan of what this could do to my trips. As a once, maybe 2 times a year visitor to WDW/DL, I don't want to have to plan out my entire trip months in advance.

If regular fastpass sticks around and isn't vastly affected by this, I can deal with it.
Mon 1/7/2013 8:03a
And even then, the planning aspects are a minor annoyance compared to the insane price point spent on this. There could be a Cars Land sized project in each of the WDW parks for this price.
Mon 1/7/2013 8:45a
After reading this my first thought was
WOW Harry Potter must be really fantastic if Disney needs to spend a billion dollars to expel the wizarding powers of HP.
Then I started thinking about all the ways I could spend a billion Disney Dollars.
Kennesaw Tom
Tue 1/8/2013 10:51a
I think there will be aspects of NextGen that I will find useful. Other aspects will not appeal to me at all.

That being said... there is no way I would charge any purchases to a wristband. Also, under, been there done that crew, you still have to show an ID when purchasing alcohol. I would just assume use a credit card and ID rather than a wristband for alcohol puschases.

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Note: Information on the discussion boards is sometimes based on rumors or incorrect information and should not be assumed true. Messages do not necessarily reflect the opinion of or its editors.

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