HBO Max may reportedly have a cheaper, ad-supported tier in 2021, making it the first HBO product to include commercials.
According to Reuters, the ad-supported version of HBO Max would launch roughly one year after the launch of HBO Max, which will be an ad-free subscription service.
HBO Max is expected to launch in the spring of 2020. Announced in October of 2018, the service will feature original programming, as well as content from HBO proper and other Warner Media properties.
WarnerMedia recently removed Friends from Netflix with plans to make it available on HBO Max when the service launches. The service will also be the only place you will be able to stream The Big Bang Theory and will be hoem to the entire runs of such series as Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Pretty Little Liars, among others.
Going forward, the service will be the exclusive streaming source for Warner Brothers dramas produced for the CW, including Batwoman and the Riverdale spinoff, Katy Keene. The service will also be the exclusive streaming source for all 11 seasons of the modern Doctor Who series.
The streaming service is expected to cost more per month than HBO’s current offering, HBO Now, which is $15 a month. Current estimates put the service somewhere in the $16 to $18/month price range. AT&T had originally indicated it would be selling three different tiers of the service; however, it appears as though those are all now combined into one offering.
The service is targeted at cord-cutters, and the ad-supported version might be more appealing to customers who want access to a limited amount of HBO’s library, a single program, for instance, and don’t want to pay full retail for the ad-free version.
AT&T is also expected to offer HBO Max for free to the 10 million AT&T customers that are also HBO subscribers.
We’ll, of course, know much more come next year when AT&T is officially ready to launch the streaming service and makes all of its plans regarding the service’s content and pricing available.
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