AT&T takes aim at Netflix with HBO-led streaming service set for a 2019 launch

WarnerMedia CEO John Stankey made remarks earlier this year that led some to fear that AT&T was intent on turning HBO into Netflix. The good news is, that doesn’t appear to be the case. The bad news is that AT&T is instead planning on launching a Netflix-style service that would mean HBO and Time Warner content will eventually disappear from other services, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

Stankey announced the service on Wednesday at the Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit, saying that the service is currently planned to launch in the fourth quarter of 2019. In addition to content from HBO, the service will also carry content from Time Warner, which AT&T recently acquired. This will include Time Warner movies, as well as TV shows from Warner-owned networks like Cartoon Network.

“You’re going to see a stronger HBO as this offering comes to market,” Stankey told the crowd “I believe this platform that we’ll put in place will see other strong brands around it that a customer can identify with.”

If you’re wondering what this means about your plans to watch the entire run of Deadwood for the fifth time, you’ll be glad to know that Stankey confirmed HBO will still be offered as a stand-alone product. He also confirmed that CNN will not be part of the new service, meaning you’ll have to look elsewhere, like AT&T’s own DirecTV Now, for your news fix.

One thing that was not confirmed was pricing, but the new service will likely be more expensive than HBO Now, which costs $15 per month. That means no matter what the price is, it’s going to be hard to convince potential customers that the service is a better value than Netflix or even HBO Now. But considering the planned launch is at least a year away, AT&T has plenty of time to add features to the service that could make it more enticing to customers.

This is an interesting time in streaming, as AT&T is far from the only major company looking at its own streaming service. Disney is also planning a family-oriented subscription service alongside its current offerings like ESPN Plus. Whether viewers find these stand-alone services to be worth it compared to one-stop shops like Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime Video remains to be seen.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: DIY smartphones and zip-on bike tires

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Emerging Tech

Here’s all the best gear and gadgetry you can snag for $100 or less

A $100 bill can get you further than you might think -- so long as you know where to look. Check out our picks for the best tech under $100, whether you're in the market for headphones or a virtual-reality headset.
Music

The best new music this week: Kurt Vile, Valley Maker, and more

Are you looking for the best new music? Each week, we scour the internet to find the most compelling new releases. On tap this week: Kurt Vile, Valley Maker, Broncho, The Dodos, Colter Wall, and Ambrose Akinmusire.
Home Theater

Free original content is coming to Apple devices, but only if it’s rated PG

New reports say that Apple is planning to bring free original content to the TV app on its devices next year, but don't expect any blood and gore, as the company will only show PG content.
Movies & TV

Lose the torrents. Here's how to watch 'Game of Thrones' online (legally)

Game of Thrones is one of the most popular shows on TV, but unless you're a cable subscriber, finding a way to watch isn't always easy. Check out our guide on how to watch online, whether you prefer using HBO, Sling TV, Hulu, or Amazon.
Smart Home

How to create spooky Halloween effects with smart home lighting and sound

This Halloween, bathe your home with eerie smart home lighting and audio effects guaranteed to spook your neighbors. Use colored light and eerie sounds to create eerie Halloween effects.
Home Theater

I’ve seen the 8K TV future, and you should be excited. Here’s why

Samsung set the tech world on fire when it announced it would sell an 85-inch 8K TV in the U.S. along with several 8K screen sizes in Europe. Debates over the validity and value of such a high resolution have continued since, and we're here…
Movies & TV

The best new movie trailers: ‘Glass,’ ‘Mortal Engines,’ ‘Pet Sematary’ and more

Everyone loves a good trailer, but keeping up with what's new isn't easy. To simplify things, we round up the best ones each week. On tap this week: New trailers for Pet Sematary, Glass, Mortal Engines, and other upcoming films.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Amazon Prime right now (October 2018)

Prime Video provides subscribers with access to a host of fantastic films, but sorting through the catalog can be an undertaking. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Here are the best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now.
Movies & TV

Best new shows and movies to stream: ‘The Haunting of Hill House’ and more

Need something to watch this weekend? Check out our list of the best new shows and movies to stream right now. On the list this week: The Haunting of Hill House season 1, The Romanoffs, and more.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Home Theater

Dish Network or DirecTV: Which is the better choice for you?

So, you’ve chosen to go with a satellite television provider. Check out our quick rundown of what both Dish Network and DirecTV offer in terms of content, hardware, and pricing, and why you might choose them over streaming services.
Home Theater

Apple Music recommendations could get superpowers thanks to latest acquisition

Following the approval of its Shazam acquisition, a new report has surfaced saying that Apple has acquired music analytics firm Asaii, with its founders now members of the Apple Music team.
Home Theater

Google Translate busts out of Pixel jail, now works on any Assistant headphones

The best feature of Google’s Pixel Buds was the built-in real-time translation. Now that incredibly useful feature is available on any headphones that feature Google Assistant integration.