MagicBand+ is coming to Disneyland and Disney California Adventure in Fall 2022. This guide covers everything you need to know: base price, launch timeframe, how the MagicBand Plus will work in parks, and our thoughts on MB+ after seeing it widely. used in Florida.
For those unfamiliar with it, MagicBand+ (MB+) is the interactive upgrade to the iconic MagicBand, offering all the features of the first two generations of this wearable. At Disneyland, the MagicBand+ will connect to park tickets or annual Magic Key passes to enter the parks or Lightning Lanes. Plus, you can connect your PhotoPass memories and more.
When activated, the MagicBand+ has color-changing lights, haptic vibrations, and gesture recognition. For more background information encompassing everything you need to know about Interactive Bands – as well as answers to any questions you may have – check out our FAQs for MagicBand Plus! (This focuses on Florida, but the device is the same on both coasts.)
According to Disney, the MagicBand+ also adds immersive elements and surprises to park experiences at Disneyland Resort when it launches in fall 2022. In sync with special moments during select nightly shows, your group will complete the magic in the sky pulsing with colorful and dancing colors. lights and vibrations.
MagicBand+ will come to life during World of Color in Disney California Adventure, Fantasmic! at Disneyland and other select nightly shows at Disneyland. (It presumably means fireworks, unnamed since the shows rotate seasonally.)
You can also explore Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland with the interactive Star Wars: Batuu Bounty Hunters quest. The vibrations and lights of your MagicBand+ will help you find virtual bounties in Black Spire Outpost.
When you find your bounty, you can use the Augmented Reality Thermal Viewer in the Play Disney Parks app to reveal who’s hiding in the shadows. Upon successful completion of your mission, local Guild Master Raga Bua will reward you with Galactic Credits.
According to Disneyland, MagicBand+’s fall 2022 launch is just the beginning – there are still more MB+ features and experiences to come. Disney notes that certain product offerings will vary between Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort. Our guess is that this means there are no room charges at Disneyland and obviously no 50th Anniversary statue minigames at Disneyland, as those don’t exist in California parks.
Here’s a look at the MagicBand+ in action at Disneyland Resort:
As with Walt Disney World, the launch of MagicBand+ has been delayed for several months at Disneyland Reosrt. We haven’t heard anything credible about what caused California’s delay in launching the MagicBand Plus. We had heard credible reports – and readers sent us photos – of MagicBand+ inventory at Disneyland several months ago.
Between that and seeing Batuu Bounty Hunters build, we strongly suspect that the work on the minigame is the delay. Work has been underway on Batuu Bounty Hunters for several weeks now, and should be completed by October if the pace at DHS is any indication. (In theory, it should be as fast or faster considering it’s already been built once now.)
Chances are the MagicBand+ will launch as soon as this minigame is ready. Disney probably doesn’t want to release the MagicBand+ until Batuu Bounty Hunters is ready to roll.
And they are right to wait. As covered in our comprehensive and brutally honest review MagicBand+ Review: Good, Bad, and Uglythe Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge mini-game is essentially the selling point of the MagicBand+ right now. Almost everything else in the “Plus” is disappointing or inconvenient.
If you’re on the fence about MagicBand Plus, this review should help you determine if it’s for you. Conversely, if you’re incredibly excited about the MagicBand+ coming to California and planning on ordering several for all your family members, you might not want to read this. Sometimes ignorance really is bliss. 😉
Pricing is unknown for the MagicBand+ at Disneyland Resort, but there’s no reason to believe it will be any different than Florida. This means MagicBand+ solid base colors will be priced at $34.99 and premium or limited release designs will be $44.99 plus tax. Of course, this is only at launch.
Costs could increase further for limited editions or designer fashion styles. We wouldn’t be surprised to see a MagicBand+ that goes for $75 by the end of the year. There may be one with a Coach bracelet that costs $600. Heck, maybe for the company’s 100th anniversary they’ll release a hideous jewel-embellished MagicBand+ that costs $1,000. It would not be the first time…
Another important detail, unlike the current generation of MagicBand 2.0 products, the MagicBand+ must be charged for use. It comes with a charger and a USB cord, which attaches under Mickey’s head.
In our experience, the MagicBand+ has incredibly poor battery life. Overnight charging is necessary for full days in the park, and a few hours of playing Batuu Bounty Hunters can completely drain the device. (If you don’t play this minigame, the battery might last more than a day, but not a full trip. It also doesn’t help that the bands aren’t fully charged.)
This is the first update to MagicBand+ wearable technology at Disneyland Resort in a long time. Last year, the company announced that the MagicBand+ and “Hey, Disney!” the voice assistant would also arrive at Disneyland Resort in 2022.
This will be the first time MagicBand+ will be available at Disneyland Resort to enhance the guest experience with hands-free convenience. The “Hey, Disney!” The voice assistant will work alongside Alexa on Amazon Echo devices and will also begin rolling out to Disneyland Resort hotel rooms. (No update today on that — and none at all this year. It’s looking increasingly likely that “Hey, Disney!” won’t debut until 2023, if ever.)
In terms of feedback, the first thing that might come to mind with MagicBand+ for many Disneyland fans is Glow with the Show. You might remember those “magical” color-changing Mickey Ear hats that interacted with World of Color and Fantasmic!
Glow with the Show was a huge push for a few years (~2012 to ~2014) at Disneyland, with ears receiving prime real estate in just about every major Disneyland Resort gift shop, despite slow sales ( the best).
In the end, Glow with the Show was a colossal flop. Even with those prominent in-store displays, multiple giveaways to “sow” some really cool PR shots, very few guests bought Glow with show ears.
The problem was that they were big, bulky and most importantly the person spending the money on Glow with the Show ears couldn’t benefit from the way they interacted with the shows and changed color because you can’t see the top of your own head.
MagicBand+ solves this problem, because you can see your own wrist.
However, it introduces a number of new issues, including the aforementioned poor battery life. Its “interactivity” (I hesitate to even call it that) with nighttime spectaculars is also far worse than technology released a decade ago.
The other thing it reminds us of is the interactive statues that Tokyo Disney Resort has made for just about every birthday for the past decade. With these you have purchased a wand or lanyard, and these unlock a light and music function on the statue itself.
MagicBand+ certainly isn’t as good as those when it comes to interactivity either. However, it has a lot of (mostly unrealized) potential with mini-games, haptic feedback, and more. It’s just going to be unlocking that in the future and hopefully launching a second generation of devices with better battery life.
I know there are ardent MagicBand fans out there and it’s likely that many Disneyland fans will be excited at the prospect of something new and collectible. Nevertheless, I cannot be alone in the feeling of wanting After MagicBand Plus. When the device was released in 2013, wearable technology wasn’t really a thing. In the years that followed, all sorts of smartwatches and other devices were released, raising the technical bar every year.
By contrast, MagicBands only saw one major overhaul and felt, at least from a technical standpoint, a bit archaic. I realize that for a lot of people, that’s the appeal of MagicBands – having technology that doesn’t require looking at a screen but makes life more convenient. Sadly, this all holds true with the MagicBand Plus, but probably not in the way many people expected when this product was first announced.
Planning a Southern California vacation? For park admission deals, read Tips to Save Money on Disneyland Tickets. Learn more about onsite and offsite hotels in our Anaheim hotel reviews and ratings. To find out where to eat, check out our Disneyland restaurant reviews. For unique ideas of things that will enhance your trip, check out What to Pack for Disney. For full advice see our Disneyland Vacation Planning Guide. Finally, for the guides beyond disneycheck out our Trails in Southern California for day trips to Los Angeles, Laguna Beach and tons of other places!
What do you think of the MagicBand Plus? Will you be buying these new interactive apparel when they go on sale at Walt Disney World in summer 2022? Will you hold back on buying current-gen MagicBands now that a review/upgrade is on the horizon, or do you not really care about interactivity? Do you agree or disagree with our assessment? Questions we can help you answer? Hearing your feedback – even when you disagree with us – is both interesting for us and helpful for other readers, so share your thoughts below in the comments!