On Tuesday, AT&T subsidiary WarnerMedia officially announced the release of its HBO Max streaming service. The firm noted the offering will host content from the BBC, CNN, Cartoon Network, Crunchyroll, The CW, HBO, TBS, TNT, TruTV, and Warner Bros. Pictures. The platform will launch in May 2020 with more than 10,000 hours of new and classic content. Furthermore, the corporation noted consumers could access its digital content hub for $14.99 a month.
Platform Details and Long-Term Ambitions
At launch, HBO Max will be entering into a fairly crowded subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) marketplace. In addition to established products like Netflix and Hulu, the platform will be competing against the imminently launching Disney+ and Apple TV+. Moreover, the service has a cost of access higher than any of its rivals.
Currently, American consumers can subscribe to Netflix for $8.99 a month and Hulu for $5.99 with advertisements and $11.99 without. Moreover, viewers will be able to enjoy 30 days of Apple TV+ content for $4.99 starting November 1. Eleven days later, audiences can pay $6.99 to watch everything available in the Disney+ streaming library.
During its Tuesday press conference, WarnerMedia stated it will give existing HBO, HBO Now, and AT&T Now subscribers access to its new SVOD at no additional cost. Furthermore, the corporation will provide 10 million select AT&T subscribers free HBO Max.
At present, HBO has 35 million subscribers in the United States, including 9 million HBO Now streaming service members. WarnerMedia wants to get 80 million people on HBO Max by 2025, with 62 percent of its audience coming from the United States. Conversely, Disney says it wants to attract 60 to 90 million people to its SVOD by 2024.
Notably, both platforms are working to catch up to Netflix, which currently boasts 158 million global subscribers.
New Content Announcements
In July, WarnerMedia outlined a host of content that would be available through HBO Max. Most notably, the corporation revealed the platform would be the exclusive home of beloved classic series like “Friends,” “The Big Bang Theory,” and “The West Wing.” The firm also noted plans to debut new original content from the likes of JJ Abrams, Hiro Murai, and Mindy Kaling.
On Tuesday, the multimedia company revealed other new and classic movies and TV shows that will be on the SVOD.
Most notably, HBO Max will host a new series called “House of the Dragon,” which is a prequel to the hit series “Game of Thrones.” Based on author George RR Martin’s book “Fire & Blood,” the program will be set 300 years before “Thrones.” The service will also premiere a new science fiction series from director Ridley Scott (“Alien”). The 10-episode serial will follow a pair of androids who are raising a group of human children on a mysterious planet.
HBO Max will also host two new series by Arrowverse executive producer Greg Berlanti. First, the superhero maven will produce a new show based on the long-running comic book series “Green Lantern.”
Besides, Berlanti will helm a new anthology series called “Strange Adventures” that will detail characters from the DC Comics canon. At launch, HBO Max will become the exclusive SVOD source for The CW’s superhero programming.
The service will also be the exclusive streaming hub to Studio Ghibli’s Academy Award-winning animated films. Furthermore, next June, the service will house all 23 seasons of “South Park” and a revival of Aaron McGruder’s controversial animated series, “The Boondocks.”
Variety has a full rundown of HBO Max’s film and television content.