WarnerMedia, and its parent company AT&T, is not the best with branding. There were once three individual HBO apps, each catering to a specific use case, but now the company is attempting to consolidate them across all platforms.
WarnerMedia has finally launched its new streaming platform HBO Max today, joining the other online entertainment services under the AT&T umbrella. The service comes with a number of original series on top of the content already available through the other HBO channels, like Game of Thrones, Westworld, Loony Toons, and DC Universe content. The US-exclusive service is free for HBO subscribers and will cost $14.99 a month for everyone else, with an option for a free seven-day trial.
Remote viewing parties have never been more popular, which should surprise no one. For those of you who have been watching TV shows and movies with your friends through the interwebs, you might be pleased to hear that Scener, which touts itself as a virtual movie theater, has just added official support for HBO GO and HBO NOW.
HBO Max is set for a May 27 debut and the rush is on for WarnerMedia to get as many people on board as possible. With AT&T as its owner, that means giving away free access and extended free trials for its wireless, broadband, and TV customers. For the outsiders, though, they can get an introductory rate for their first year.
Warner Media/AT&T already has several streaming/TV services under its umbrella, including HBO Go, HBO Now, AT&T TV, Boomerang, and DC Universe. The company has been working for a while on a more complete streaming service with all the offerings of its existing catalog (plus many more additions) — HBO Max — and now the mega-service has a release date.
As the novel coronavirus pandemic is expected to peak over the next several weeks, having the masses stay at home will be most crucial during this time. But the lockdown orders do have their deleterious domino effects from unemployment to mental deterioration. It's under these pretenses that AT&T-owned HBO has decided to offer about 500 hours of shows and movies to everyone, subscription-free.
Cord cutting was all great and fun until every network and content maker jumped on the streaming service bandwagon and users started discovering how many subscriptions they'd have to accumulate to replace what used to be their single cable bill. YouTube TV has been trying to bridge that gap by offering a little bit of everything, including live sports, for US users. This spring, it'll also add HBO.
HBO has some great exclusive shows that are only scarcely available outside its network, so you need to rely on the cable company's apps to enjoy its content on the go. Besides HBO Go and HBO Now, Home Box Office also offers a European version of its service, simply called HBO. This app has received a new download feature that finally brings it on-par with HBO Go and competing platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, or Disney+.
If you ask any mainstream technology or media company, they'll tell you subscription services are the gold rush of the 21st century. What company wouldn't revel in the steady flow of dollar bills rolling in from a defined user base every single month? A recurring line of income keeps companies alive, after all. Looking to cash in on the subscription craze, HBO is launching its own streaming service, and there's a ton of content on the way.