WarnerMedia unveils HBO Max

Wednesday, October 30th, 2019 
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Launching May 2020 With 10,000 Hours of Premium Content for $14.99/Month

  • Incredible Breadth of Content With More New Originals from Ridley Scott, Greg Berlanti, Mindy Kaling, Elizabeth Banks, Issa Rae, Conan O’Brien, Looney Tunes, Cartoon Network Studios and More
  • HBO Gives Series Order to HOUSE OF THE DRAGON, Co-Created By Ryan Condal and George RR. Martin; Ryan Condal and Miguel Sapochnik to Partner as Showrunners
  • Existing AT&T HBO Customers and HBO Now Direct-Billed Subscribers to get HBO Max at No Additional Cost
  • Customers Who Subscribe to AT&T’s Premium Video, Mobile and Broadband Packages Will be Offered Bundles at Launch with HBO Max at No Additional Cost
  • Elevated, Highly Engaging Entertainment Experience with Personalized Features and Functionality

BURBANK, Calif. — WarnerMedia today unveiled significant new details about its HBO Max direct-to-consumer strategy on the company’s iconic Warner Bros. lot, revealing a comprehensive offering of programming options for every audience, product features and functionality, and its go-to-market plans.

HBO Max Screenshot

“With this entire company coming together, we will have one of the most robust collections of premium streaming content that will appeal to all demographics in the household, and be able to achieve incredible scale and reach right out of the gate,” said Robert Greenblatt, chairman of WarnerMedia Entertainment and Direct-to-Consumer. “We couldn’t achieve this without AT&T’s unprecedented and enthusiastic support. When you live in a world with ‘dragons’ — it feels very good to have one of your own in the game!”

Launching in May of 2020, WarnerMedia will be making HBO Max available to customers in the U.S. for $14.99 per month. The company is targeting 50 million domestic subscribers and 75 – 90 million premium subscribers by year-end in 2025 across the U.S., Latin America and Europe. At launch, AT&T will immediately offer HBO Max to the roughly 10 million HBO subscribers on AT&T distribution platforms, at no additional charge. HBO Now direct-billed users who subscribe directly through HBONow.com will also have access to WarnerMedia’s HBO Max product. AT&T customers on premium video, mobile and broadband services will be offered bundles with HBO Max included at no additional charge. We are in active discussions with our distributors and look forward to offering their customers seamless access to this great product.

“We’ve positioned HBO Max in a way that makes sense for our Company, our distribution partners and our customers,” said Tony Goncalves, CEO of Otter Media. “We are creating a company-wide ‘membership-model’ that taps into AT&T’s 170 million direct-to-consumer relationships, 5,500 retail stores and 3.2 billion annual customer touchpoints to achieve scale and reach at launch.”

HBO Max will launch with 10,000 hours of curated premium content including the entire HBO service, bundled with new HBO Max Originals that expand the breadth of the offering targeted at young adults, kids and families. HBO Max will pull from WarnerMedia’s deep library of fan favorites in its 100-year content collection, including library content from Warner Bros., New Line, DC, CNN, TNT, TBS, truTV, Turner Classic Movies, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Crunchyroll, Rooster Teeth, Looney Tunes and more. HBO Max will also offer a robust selection of third party acquired series and movie titles that will rival any other streaming offering in the marketplace.

“We are attracting top talent to bring in a wide variety of original ideas, curating the rich library assets of this company, and acquiring the most compelling third-party programming available,” said Kevin Reilly, chief content officer, HBO Max, president, TNT, TBS and truTV.

Depth And Breadth Of Programming

HBO Max, anchored by HBO and its iconic shows, movies, documentaries and specials, will build on HBO’s legacy and offer something for every demographic – from dramas, comedies, sci-fi, and anime to children’s, unscripted, films, documentaries, comedy specials, late-night shows, blockbuster movies and library content – ensuring that everyone in the household has thousands of hours of entertainment at their fingertips.

In addition to series, specials and docs, HBO Max will have 1,800 film titles at launch that will cover every genre, taste and fan interest, including HBO’s vast collection/library of new theatrical hits and beloved classics. Global blockbuster franchises from Warner Bros. including The Matrix, The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Gremlins and the Lego movies will be available in the first year, along with every DC film from the last decade including Aquaman and Joker, and every Batman and Superman movie from the last 40 years.

“We work with an unmatched roster of innovative artists and we couldn’t be happier to be bringing them to HBO Max next year and well into the future,” said Ann Sarnoff, chair and CEO of Warner Bros. “HBO Max will have the pick of the litter here at Warner Bros.”

Features And Functionality

Throughout the year after its initial launch, HBO Max will roll out a variety of new features and functionality not found on any other streaming platforms today, including:

  • Recommended By Humans – HBO Max will combine Human Powered Discovery and analytics in novel ways to make it much easier for viewers to quickly find the content they are passionate about. Here, talent and influencers will make recommendations to our users about content they love, in the form of short, authentic videos to talk about how they’ve fallen in love with it and why.
  • Co-Viewing – Research shows that many viewers are aware of how viewing with others can throw off their recommendations. HBO Max is solving this co-viewing challenge by allowing viewers to create shared homepages that are completely separate from their personal homepages, but tailored to the group’s likes and needs. They can create shared watch lists and view with members of their household without impacting their personal profiles.

HBO Max will also offer standard direct-to-consumer features, such as:

  • Content Hubs – Content hubs feature clusters of content from recognizable brands that attract passionate audiences.
  • Personalized Profiles & Homepages
  • Kids’ profiles and Parental PIN usage
  • Downloads for offline viewing

Additional Details

HBO Max’s leading quality and breadth of content will be fueled by AT&T’s continued investments and resources to ensure the offering is attractive to every household.

Within the first year of launch WarnerMedia plans to expand the service to include an AVOD option, offering consumers access to even more content, with more flexibility to manage the overall price value options on the platform.

The company also announced plans in the future to provide subscribers with unique live, interactive and special event programming as it continues to build out and differentiate HBO Max.

AT&T intends to expand HBO Max beyond the U.S., initially prioritizing Latin America and Europe where the company currently has ownership interest in or operates premium HBO networks, and has over-the-top services.

AT&T intends to invest significantly in HBO Max, with an incremental investment of $1.5 to $2 billion in the partial year of 2020 and continued investment in following years. That investment includes spending for new content, foregone licensing revenue of our content, operating expense for the technology platform, and marketing.

“To build, launch and grow the best streaming platform available requires a major investment and total support,” said John Stankey, AT&T Chief Operating Officer and CEO of WarnerMedia. “We’re making that commitment and putting the strength of our entire company behind this.”

Links: WarnerMedia; HBO Max; AT&T