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HBO Max: expected start dates, prices, shows and films

HBO Max, the upcoming HBO-anchored streaming service, has a lot in common with many competitors who appear in the so-called streaming wars, such as Disney Plus and Peacock. HBO Max from WarnerMedia from AT & T will contain an extensive catalog of hit shows and films as well as a large list of exclusive originals with well-known stars.

One of the main differences: HBO Max is the most expensive of all services to be restarted.

HBO Max will cost $ 1

5 a month if it launches in the United States sometime in May. Some people who already have a current HBO subscription will get Max inclusive for free but not all . (Sometime in HBO Max's first year, the service will add a level of advertising that is cheaper or even free, but the company has not given any details.)

HBO Max will be the last subscriber to arrive in approximate time A six-month period known as the streaming war in which technology and entertainment giants launch their own streaming video subscriptions to compete against Netflix. With more than 167 million subscribers worldwide, Netflix has dominated the transition to streaming TV.

HBO Max posted its first teaser for the service in February and put together a collection of clips from shows and films that you can see there. However, there was a lack of insight into the new original programming that the company will only stream on the service.

It is still unclear what titles on HBO Max’s list of so-called Max Originals will be the service’s bets to become a big hit – essentially what HBO Max hopes will be his version of The Mandalorian and Baby Yoda ?

Whether it's something that HBO Max creates from the DC universe or as a forerunner of Game of Thrones, HBO owner AT&T invests billions of dollars in original programs as well as offers to popular reps like Friends and The Stream Big Bang Theory. (HBO Max even makes a blank Friends Reunion Special with the original cast.)

How much does HBO Max cost?

HBO Max starts at $ 15 a month.

Within the first year, the service is expanded by a further level, which contains advertising. The company didn't specify the price, start date, or catalog restrictions for this level, but it would probably be cheaper or free.

HBO's current standalone streaming service, HBO Now, also costs $ 15 a month. Although HBO Now will continue to operate, HBO Max will essentially replace it. HBO Now subscribers are welcome to use this service, but essentially pay the same amount for less content. HBO Max will have the same shows and films on HBO Now and a large catalog of licensed programs and exclusive originals.

Compared to competing streaming services launched before HBO Max, this pricing can feel steep for many consumers. Disney Plus costs $ 7 a month and Apple TV Plus $ 5 a month – and both offer deals that can further reduce the price or offer options for longer free periods of until to a year. Apple, for example, awards an annual subscription to anyone who has bought an Apple device since early September. And Disney has signed a contract with Verizon to give each cellphone subscriber to the cellphone provider a year for free.

Some people who already have a subscription to HBO can unlock HBO Max at no additional cost, but not all . HBO Now subscribers can upgrade to HBO Max for free, and HBO subscribers through AT&T can also get it for free (i.e. HBO customers via DirecTV, U-Vers, AT & T TV Now, AT & T TV and AT & T Wireless users who can add HBO plans with certain unlimited features).

However, it is unclear whether you can include HBO Max if you purchase your HBO through another pay TV provider, whether it is a traditional provider like Comcast, Spectrum or Dish Network, or an internet-based provider like Hulu or Amazon Prime Video trades channels, Apple TV channels and The Roku Channel. When AT&T announced HBO Max at a three-hour presentation in October, the company said it was still in talks with other pay TV providers about offering HBO Max to its traditional HBO subscribers.

When will HBO Max be launched?

HBO Max is launched in the United States in May. The exact date has yet to be determined.

After that, the first international expansion of HBO Max will give priority to Latin America and Europe. Latin America will receive HBO Max in 2021, the company said.

US timing from HBO Max will bring it towards the end of the parade of streaming services. Following the launch of Disney Plus and Apple TV Plus in November, the next thing on the agenda is Quibi, a mobile streaming service from the Hollywood giant Jeffrey Katzenberg that will focus on short episodic originals that can only be viewed on cell phones. Quibi starts on April 6th.

The following week, on April 15, Comcasts NBCUniversal will launch its Peacock streaming service for Comcast's own Xfinity X1 cable customers and its Flex streaming customers.

HBO Max will launch sometime in May, and then Peacock will be launched on July 15th for everyone else in the United States along with the Summer Olympics.

Shows and films: What can I see on HBO Max?

The HBO Max catalog is all over the map.

HBO Max will include all shows and films on HBO as well as a selection of high-quality licensed content such as Friends, The Big Bang Theory, Rick & Morty and South Park. And it will put the exclusive original programming over it. HBO Max will have 31 originals in the first year and up to 50 originals in the second year.

The easiest part of the catalog to understand is HBO itself. HBO Max will contain everything on regular HBO, that is: all movies that come and go from the channel; new episodes from all HBO series like Watchmen, Westworld, last week tonight with John Oliver, Sesame Street and so on; and the past seasons of these programs as well as the full HBO back catalog such as Game of Thrones, Silicon Valley, Veep, The Wire etc. as well as all original HBO films, documentaries and specials.

In addition, AT&T licensed external hits to replenish the HBO Max catalog. The most noticeable were:

  • A reported $ 425 million deal to win the rights to all episodes of Friends from the 90s left Netflix to start streaming on HBO Max when it launched.
  • A announced a $ 500 million deal to stream the Big Bang theory.

Deals for past seasons by Rick and Morty are also secured; 11 of the last seasons of Doctor Who plus three more; CW dramas such as Pretty Little Liars, Batwoman and Riverdale spinoff Katy Keene as well as other upcoming CW series; The Prince of Bel-Air; and the west wing; among many others.

The animated satire South Park will not only contribute its full back catalog to HBO Max, but will also stream new episodes. South Park's latest episodes will air on HBO Max 24 hours after Comedy Central airs for the next three seasons.

And HBO Max will have exclusive original shows and films called Max Originals.

The original HBO Max series will release episodes for the most part weekly. HBO Max will have 31 original series in its starting year (in combination with HBO content a total of 69 series). In 2021, HBO Max Max Originals will expand to 50 shows. About half of the originals are aimed at young adults aged 16 to 34. The rest is shared between adult, child, and family content outside of the HBO brand.

Some of the highlights of the originals set for HBO Max are:

  • New DC titles. A secret Green Lantern series that producer Greg Berlanti (a young adult TV guru behind Riverdale and Arrow) says will travel into space and "promises to be our biggest DC show that was ever made ". Strange Adventures a one-hour drama anthology series, also produced by Berlanti, that explores the overlapping lives of mortals and superhumans. DC Super Hero High is a half-hour comedy by Elizabeth Banks, the producer and actress known for the Hunger Games films and 30 rock, who focuses on a group of teenage boarding school students for "gifted" children.
  • A science fiction epic by Ridley Scott. The famous filmmaker behind Blade Runner, Alien and The Martian developed a 10 episode series called Raised by Wolves that focuses on two androids that raise human children on a mysterious planet. "As the burgeoning colony of people threatens to be torn apart by religious differences, the androids learn that controlling people's beliefs is a tricky and difficult task," the company said. The show has completed production in South Africa.
  • Projects by J.J. Abrams. Abrams, known for a parade of TV and box office hits, signed a mega deal with AT&T and WarnerMedia to realize projects for the company, including unspecified programs for HBO Max.
  • A half-hour Comedy by actress-producer Issa Rae. Raes Rap Sh * t examines the music business in Miami through the eyes of three women: an aspiring hip-hop duo and their busy manager.
  • A half-hour comedy by actress / producer Mindy Kaling. College Girls (a working title) tracks three 18-year-old roommates at Evermore College, Vermont.
  • The animation series Boondocks will receive "two reinterpreted seasons" and a 50-minute special in autumn 2020.
  • A new Jellystone animation series with the classic Hanna Barbera characters from Warner Bros. Animation.
  • New cartoon series from Cartoon Network Studios titled The Fungies and Tig N & # 39; Seek as well as a hybrid live action / cartoon comedy, Tooned Out, by Oscar -Winner director Robert Zemeckis.
  • Comedy specials from Conan O & # 39; Brien and the team behind his TBS show. You will develop five stand-up specials for HBO Max: O & # 39; Brien will host two specials that contain short sets of several upcoming comics and curate sets of three comedians for hours. This panel will join another one-hour special by comedian James Veitch.

The service will contain a smaller board with original films, between five and ten a year. The first highlights of the original film include:

  • A two-frame deal with Reese Witherspoons Hello Sunshine.
  • A documentary about Anthony Bourdain.
  • A four-picture deal with Berlanti, including Unpregnant, about two teenage girls road trip to New Mexico after finding out she was pregnant, based on the Jenni Hendriks and Young Adult novel Ted Caplan.
  • Super Intelligence, a comedy starring Melissa McCarthy about a woman whose romantic life was selected for observation by artificial intelligence.
  • Bobbie Sue, a comedy starring Jane the Virgin Gina Rodriguez as Up- The aspiring young lawyer who joins a stuffy law firm in Boston.

Licensed films will also be an important part of the catalog. HBO Max will have more than 18,000 films, and any film that can be viewed on the traditional HBO network can also be streamed on HBO Max. Highlights from the HBO Max film catalog include:

  • The full set of trilogies The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings and The Matrix.
  • The Lego films.
  • DC films like Joker, Wonder Woman, Suicide Squad, Shazam, Aquaman and every Batman and Superman film of the past 40 years.
  • Studio Ghibli anime films that have never been released for streaming in the United States.
  • Classic films such as The Wizard of Oz, Casablanca, Citizen Kane, The Shining, A star is born, sings in the rain, 2001: A space odyssey and many others.
  • Newer hits like Crazy Rich Asians.

CNET has posted a comprehensive list of all shows and films for HBO Max so far.

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Which devices can stream HBO Max?

According to the HBO, the Max service will be available on a "very wide range of devices", including phones, tablets, the Internet, connected TVs, and game consoles.

However, the company still has to specify which particular devices support the service.

How does HBO Max differ from all other AT&T streaming services?

HBO Max is similar to HBO Go and HBO Now with additional programming that you wouldn't get from HBO only.

In general, HBO Now and HBO Go are almost the same product. The main difference is who uses it: anyone can sign up for HBO Now for $ 15 a month, while HBO Go is the app for people who already have an HBO subscription through a live TV provider like cable or satellite. Both HBO Now and HBO Go stream all of the programs available on WarnerMedia's traditional HBO network.

People who already have HBO Now can switch to HBO Max at no additional cost. For HBO Go subscribers it is more complicated .

And the rest?

Yes, there are more.

AT&T TV is similar to one of these cable or satellite services, but is provided over the Internet. AT & T TV includes live channels, DVR, and video-on-demand that subscribers are familiar with, as well as the ability to stream from apps such as Netflix and Pandora. In order to be able to watch TV on television, AT & T TV has its own streaming box, which AT & T must use. Subscribers can also see everything on mobile devices with one app. It starts at $ 59.99 a month.

AT & T TV Now on the other hand, is a live TV streaming service modeled on Sling TV or YouTube TV. If you were familiar with DirecTV Now, AT&T TV Now is just the renamed version of this service. Instead of requiring a specific box, subscribers can stream live channels to Rokus, Apple TVs, Fire TVs, and more. The channels are also available in a mobile app. It also has a cloud DVR. Services like this are sometimes referred to as skinny bundle streaming services, but the cheapest package from AT&T TV Now isn't particularly thin – $ 65 a month after the last price increase with more than 45 Live channels, including HBO. Nevertheless, it is not quite as robust as AT & T TV, which is supposed to replicate the huge cable packages of traditional television.

Finally, AT&T Watch TV comes closer to a traditional thin bundle. It offers more than 35 live channels, including TBS, TNT and CNN from AT&T. AT&T Watch TV is a free perk that is included in certain unlimited AT&T wireless data plans. Anyone can sign up for $ 15 a month. It was designed as a mobile-first service, but you can stream AT&T Watch TV to TV with some boxes, including Apple TV and Amazon Fire TV, but others are not supported, such as: B. Roku boxes.

Simple, right?

Originally published on October 28 and updated as new information is released.

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