HBO Max: Every little thing to know — like why you possibly can lastly stream on Amazon Hearth TV however nonetheless not on Roku


HBO Max launched in Might.


Warner Bros., HBO Max

HBO Max is the premium community’s streaming service changing HBO Now and HBO Go, that includes all of the channel’s programming plus an amped-up library of additional exhibits, films and originals, just like the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air reunion dropping early Wednesday at 5 p.m. PT. However HBO Max had a bumpy launch earlier this 12 months, failing to get its app on the most popular streaming devices and complicated some would-be viewers. It is attracting solely a fraction of the thousands and thousands of present HBO subscribers who can improve to Max totally free. 

Lastly, months after launch, the service reached a deal for the HBO Max app to stream on Amazon devices like Fire TV, “Firestick” and Hearth tablets, beginning Tuesday. However Max is still unavailable on Roku 

Just like rival NetflixHBO Max is among the many costliest of the bunch. New subscribers can enroll and pay $15 a month after a weeklong free trial. That matches the worth HBO already expenses for its common channel on most pay-TV suppliers and for its preexisting standalone streaming service, HBO Now. Some (however not all) present HBO prospects can get HBO Max at no added value. It additionally competes with new rivals like Disney Plus, Peacock and Apple TV Plus, however all three are a lot much less expensive.  

As a result of HBO Max did not attain a distribution take care of both Roku and Amazon, its app wasn’t obtainable to stream on these gadgets for months — they usually’re the most well-liked streaming gadgets within the nation. Roku and Amazon Hearth TV collectively represented 70% of the streaming devices in the US final 12 months. 

The blackout has lastly lifted from Amazon Hearth TV gadgets. HBO Max stated Monday that it reached a take care of Amazon so as to add assist for the HBO Max app on Amazon’s Hearth TV gadgets, together with its fashionable dongle also known as Firestick, in addition to Hearth tablets. 

However HBO Max stays lacking from Roku. HBO has a unique streaming app on Roku, merely known as HBO, which is proscribed to programming on the common community. However the expanded catalog of Max is not obtainable on Roku with a easy one-click HBO Max app. 

Some Roku customers can work out workarounds to entry HBO Max, like “casting” to their Rokus from their telephones. Final week, individuals with 4K Roku gadgets acquired a brand new workaround to stream HBO Max itself, as most Roku 4K streamers and TVs up to date to assist Apple’s AirPlay 2. Which means individuals with iPhones and iPads can beam the HBO Max programming on their handheld gadgets to their TV screens to observe it there. 

Nonetheless, to entice you to present it a strive on different platforms, HBO Max has padded itself with extra content material than you may discover on the common HBO channel. For a similar value, HBO Max doubles the quantity of programming. AT&T, which owns HBO as a part of its WarnerMedia TV and movie division, has been pouring billions of {dollars} into its budgets for authentic programming and into costly offers to stream blockbuster films from DC, Studio Ghibli and the Criterion Collection, in addition to fashionable exhibits like Friends, South ParkThe Big Bang TheoryRick and Morty, Doctor Who and new episodes of Adventure Time. (There is a deep dive into the exhibits and flicks on Max close to the tip of this text.) 

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HBO Max launched with virtually the complete catalog of Studio Ghibli animated films, streaming within the US for the primary time. 


Studio Ghibli/GKids

As the coronavirus pandemic has shuttered theaters and compelled thousands and thousands to entertain themselves at dwelling, HBO Max’s dad or mum firm, which incorporates the film studio Warner Bros., is beginning to flip to HBO Max to launch new films initially supposed for the large display screen. 

HBO Max additionally has podcasts in its library linked to its programming, alongside the strains of final 12 months’s podcast companion to the miniseries Chernobyl. Raised by Wolves, an authentic sci-fi drama directed by Ridley Scott, has a podcast obtainable now on Max, for instance. 

HBO Max’s so-called Max Originals additionally provide new, unique exhibits and flicks. One of many newest: The Witches, a reboot of the basic Roald Dahl e book and 1990 film. November will convey The Flight Attendant, a comedic thriller starring Kaley Cuoco, and a reunion special of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Additionally within the pipeline is the fabled “Snyder cut” of the 2017 movie Justice League, in addition to Peacemaker — the DC spinoff collection is designed to be linked to subsequent 12 months’s theatrical film The Suicide Squad and can star John Cena reprising his function and James Gunn writing and directing earlier than he begins work on the subsequent Guardians of the Galaxy film. Different originals that’ve already been launched embrace Raised by Wolves, which seems to be the most well-liked Max authentic up to now; an Journey Time animated hour-long particular, the primary of 4; and indie movie Class Action Park, a documentary concerning the world’s most harmful amusement park. 

One extremely anticipated authentic stays lacking. A Associates reunion particular was anticipated to perform because the service’s marquee exclusive on day one. However like most issues on the earth, HBO Max’s authentic productions have been disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic. Confined to their properties, individuals throughout the nation are streaming rather more, however the novel coronavirus and its respiratory illness, COVID-19, have additionally shut down tv productions globally. (The corporate had stated it was aiming to movie the Associates reunion by the tip of the summer season nevertheless it was postponed again in August.)

HBO Max’s $15-a-month value matches the price of HBO Now and of HBO’s common channel if you get it via most pay-TV suppliers. By comparability, Disney Plus is $7 a month and Netflix’s hottest tier is $14 a month.

For brand spanking new HBO prospects, pricing is simple. You simply enroll and pay the $15 month-to-month value after a seven-day free trial. Early subsequent 12 months, HBO Max plans so as to add a brand new tier that is cheaper every month however contains commercials to assist the low cost. 

However should you already pay for HBO, the query of whether or not you get a free improve to HBO Max is extra difficult. Some individuals who have already got an everyday HBO subscription or HBO Now will get Max for no extra cost, however not everybody. So that you can get the automated improve to Max, HBO must strike a take care of the corporate that is already billing you for HBO, whether or not it is a cable TV firm like Constitution or a digital supplier like Apple or Amazon. HBO Max has been ramping up these offers, and there is a rising checklist of suppliers which are letting their HBO prospects improve to Max. (See the complete checklist under.) However HBO Max would not have offers with each supplier. 

This confusion could also be a think about HBO Max’s problem getting present HBO pay-TV subscribers to enroll in Max, even when they already qualify for an improve at no added value. A fraction of the greater than 30 million present HBO prospects who qualify for a free improve have truly gone via and signed up. All they’d need to do is obtain the app, log in and watch — however thousands and thousands aren’t up to now. 

Total, about 8.6 million account holders signed up for HBO Max in its first 5 months, via the tip of September. By comparability, Disney Plus reported greater than 10 million signups in little greater than 24 hours after it launched in November.

One factor that will get extra individuals flocking to HBO Max throughout the coronavirus pandemic can be premiering big-budget films like Tenet or Wonder Woman 1984 there. Different Hollywood giants, together with Disney and Comcast’s Universal Pictures, have been switching to on-line debuts for a few of their movies that had been initially destined for the large display screen, like Disney Plus’ launch of Hamilton in July, Mulan in September and Pixar’s Soul in December.   

However HBO Max did not premiere Warner Bros.’ Tenet, which had a posh theatrical launch. AT&T has beforehand indicated that different films, like Wonder Woman 1984, in all probability will not find yourself on the streaming service till lengthy after their eventual theatrical debuts. Although the corporate might transfer some movies off its theatrical slate and onto HBO Max as a substitute, AT&T’s CEO stated this could be content material “on the margins.” The choice to premiere The Witches on HBO Max earlier than theaters, nevertheless, might trace that WarnerMedia could also be stress-free its stance. 

One other lacking component: HBO Max doesn’t offer 4K decision or high dynamic range picture high quality at launch. CNET’s review of HBO Max displays that till the service resolves these points, HBO feels prefer it’s nonetheless a piece in progress. 

So, it is difficult. Beneath are the finer particulars about HBO Max’s value, reductions, app and its exhibits and flicks.

What gadgets can stream HBO Max?

HBO Max is accessible on a wide range of gadgets, nevertheless it’s lacking an app for Roku.

  • Most Apple gadgets that may stream video assist HBO Max — iPhone, iPad, iPod Contact, Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD. Nevertheless, prospects with second- and third-generation Apple TV fashions might want to stream HBO Max content material from their iPhone or iPad to their TV with AirPlay.
  • Google’s Android working system for telephones and tablets have an app for Android TV gadgets, Chromebooks, Google Chromecast and Chromecast built-in gadgets will assist HBO Max too. 
  • Sony’s PlayStation 4 programs can obtain the HBO Max app through the PlayStation Retailer. 
  • Microsoft’s Xbox One gaming consoles have the HBO Max app through the Microsoft Retailer.
  • Choose Samsung internet-connected good TVs — fashions from 2016 via 2020 — can obtain and buy HBO Max straight.
  • Amazon Hearth TV gadgets and Hearth tablets could have assist for HBO Max’s app beginning Tuesday.

However Roku gadgets nonetheless do not assist HBO Max. Roku is likely one of the hottest strains of streaming gadgets within the US, with greater than 46 million lively account. 

Folks with 4K Roku gadgets acquired a brand new workaround to stream HBO Max itself in November. Most Roku 4K streamers and TVs up to date with assist for Apple’s AirPlay 2, which implies iPhones and iPads with the HBO Max app can “forged” to Roku-connected TV screens. That may unlock the expanded HBO Max catalog for some Roku prospects, even with no deal.  

HBO Max executives have stated they’ve an app prepared for Roku, however the firm should attain a take care of the distributor first. Usually, Roku has stated it’s targeted on mutually constructive distribution agreements with all new providers, with out a lot elaboration. However greater than 5 months have handed since HBO Max launched with no deal?

What do I do if I beforehand used HBO Go or Now on Roku or Hearth TV? 

The sunsetting of HBO Go and rebranding of HBO Now arrange difficulties for some Roku and Amazon Hearth TV customers. Anyone who beforehand streamed HBO Go on a Roku or Hearth TV was out of the blue caught with a inoperable app and wasn’t given a lot steerage on learn how to cope. 

The excellent news is these customers can unlock the newly renamed HBO app, however they should leap via some hoops first. AT&T pseudo-collapsed HBO Go and HBO Now collectively into the rebranded HBO app. Whereas this app will not have any of the additional originals, exhibits or films that you simply get with HBO Max, you may nonetheless be capable of proceed streaming common HBO programming with it on Roku and Hearth TV. 

However for legacy HBO Go prospects, it’s worthwhile to improve your HBO account for HBO Max. When you register an e-mail deal with and password with HBO Max, you need to use your HBO Max credentials to register to the newly rebranded HBO app on each Roku and Amazon Hearth TV.  

As well as, Roku famous that individuals who pay for HBO via Comcast, Constitution or AT&T TV can stream HBO on the Comcast Xfinity Stream, Spectrum TV and AT&T TV apps too. Amazon did not reply to messages looking for remark. 

What does HBO Max value?

HBO Max is $15 a month at launch with a seven-day free trial. 

AT&T CEO John Stankey has stated HBO Max will launch a cheaper, ad-supported tier early subsequent 12 months. He did not specify the worth, the exact launch date or any catalog limitations this tier may need. 

Earlier than launch, individuals who preordered the service at HBOMax.com unlocked a reduction deal that lowered the worth to $13 a month for the primary 12 months. Preordered accounts did not qualify for the seven-day free trial. 

Legacy HBO Now subscribers can maintain streaming the programming from common HBO with out registering for HBO Max, however they will primarily be paying the identical quantity for much less programming.  

In contrast with rival streaming providers launching earlier than HBO Max, that pricing might really feel steep. Disney Plus is $7 a month, and Apple TV Plus is $5. Each are providing offers that may lower the worth additional or providing prolonged free durations to some prospects. Apple, for instance, is gifting away a 12 months’s subscription to anybody who’s bought an Apple gadget. And Disney arrange a take care of Verizon so most of the service’s cellular subscribers get a 12 months free. 

How do I get HBO Max if I already pay for HBO? What is going to it value me?

Issues get extra difficult if you have already got HBO and wish to know what the launch of HBO Max means for you. Some individuals who have already got an present subscription to HBO are in a position to unlock HBO Max at no additional value, but not everyone

Legacy HBO Now subscribers via Apple or Google barely wanted to do something to unlock HBO Max. The HBO Now app was routinely changed by the HBO Max app through a software program replace on these cellular gadgets that assist HBO Max. In these circumstances, if you open the brand new HBO Max app, you simply must conform to the HBO Max Phrases of Use and Privateness Coverage and select to “Entry All of HBO Max,” and also you’re set, in keeping with an HBO Now support page.

Some HBO Max distributors unlock an HBO Max improve at no additional value for any present HBO and legacy HBO Now prospects, because of offers HBO Max has struck with them. You qualify for the HBO Max improve at no additional value should you already pay for HBO via: 

  • AT&T (HBO’s dad or mum firm) and DirecTV, U-verse, AT&T TV Now, AT&T TV and AT&T wi-fi customers who can add HBO with sure limitless plans.
  • Charter and its Spectrum services.
  • YouTube TV or Google.
  • Apple.
  • Hulu.
  • Altice USA and its Optimum and Suddenlink providers.
  • Verizon and its Fios providers.
  • Cox Communications.
  • The NCTC group of impartial cable and broadband corporations — that features WOW!, Atlantic Broadband, RCN, Grande Communications & Wave, MCTV and others. (Check if your pay-TV provider is an NCTC member.)
  • Comcast X1 and Flex prospects.

Nevertheless, it is unclear if HBO Max will strike extra offers with different pay-TV suppliers, whether or not that is conventional suppliers like Dish or internet-based ones like Amazon Prime Video Channels and The Roku Channel

AT&T can be providing an advanced matrix of promos for HBO Max. Some prospects get Max at no additional value, whereas others qualify for a one-month, three-month or one-year free trial. Your finest shot at determining whether or not you qualify is to test your account or the myAT&T app, however CNET additionally lists AT&T’s qualification phrases for its HBO Max promos

When will HBO Max launch elsewhere?

HBO Max launched Might 27 within the US. 

After that, HBO Max’s first worldwide expansions will prioritize Latin America and Europe. Latin America will get HBO Max in 2021, the corporate has stated. 

HBO Max’s US timing will put it close to the tip of a parade of streaming service launches. Disney Plus and Apple TV Plus launched in November. April introduced Quibi, a mobile-only streaming service that options quick, episodic originals. Additionally in April, NBCUniversal’s Peacock launched a “sneak peek” at its service on Comcast earlier than launching nationally July 15. 

What product options does HBO Max have? 

In a long-anticipated function for anybody streaming HBO Go, HBO Max has downloads for its cellular apps. Sadly, like most issues with HBO Max, the corporate would not have a transparent reply for whether or not there are limitations on the quantity of programming you possibly can obtain.

Friends

HBO Max brokered a reported $425 million deal for all episodes of ’90s hit Associates, which exited Netflix to start out streaming on HBO Max at launch.


NBC

“We do not have a crisp reply for you on what number of downloads will likely be allowed however it may be a really snug quantity for most individuals,” Andy Forssell, the product chief of HBO Max, stated. “The restrict will in all probability be how a lot area you could have in your gadget versus our restrict, and that may liberalize over time.” 

HBO Max means that you can stream to a few completely different gadgets concurrently. By comparability, Disney Plus permits 4 simultaneous streams, and Netflix permits between one and 4 relying on how a lot you pay every month. 

It’s also possible to create as much as 5 profiles to maintain suggestions separate for various members of the family, and it additionally has child accounts which are unlocked by coming into a PIN. These parental controls permit mothers and dads to set the maturity ranges of the programming every youngsters’ profile can entry, primarily based on rankings like PG and TV-14. 

For HBO Now members, HBO Max routinely replaces the HBO Now cellular app via a software program replace. 

However there is a draw back to the transition from HBO Now and HBO Go to HBO Max: HBO Max will not protect any of your watch historical past should you change from an present HBO streaming account. So your personalised suggestions begin with a clear slate, and HBO Max will not know, for instance, should you’ve already watched each episode of Recreation of Thrones 3 times or should you’re midway via the film Joker and wish to decide again up the place you left off. 

One other lacking component: HBO Max doesn’t offer 4K decision nor high dynamic range picture high quality at launch. 

The place can I join HBO Max? 

The only technique to get HBO Max is to enroll in it straight at hbomax.com

Via Apple, HBO Max will likely be an iOS app for iPhone and iPad, which is able to will let you enroll and pay via an in-app buy. Apple may also combine HBO Max into its personal TV app, which lets you congregate sure streaming channels to observe them in a single place. 

Via Google, HBO Max could have an app for Android telephones and tablets within the Google Play retailer, and you can enroll contained in the app with an in-app buy. You will additionally be capable of stream HBO Max on Android TV, Chromebook and Google Chromecast. When you already subscribe to HBO Now via Google Play, you may routinely be capable of log in to HBO Max at launch at no further cost, and you may proceed to be billed via Google. And YouTube TV, the streaming pay-TV service operated by Google’s YouTube, may also carry HBO Max. 

Folks with Samsung Good TVs that assist the HBO Max app may also be capable of enroll straight there. 


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HBO Max: How to get it



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Shows and movies: What can I watch?

Generally, HBO Max includes all the shows and movies on HBO, plus a selection of high-profile licensed content, like Friends, The Big Bang Theory, Rick & Morty and South Park. It’ll layer exclusive original programming on top of that. HBO Max said it will have 30 originals in year one and 60 in year two.

Now that the service is live, an easy way to see what’s available without signing up is a third-party catalog search service like Reelgood. The following section summarizes what HBO Max has and what’s coming. 

The simplest part of the catalog to understand is HBO itself. HBO Max includes everything on regular HBO, so that means all the theatrical movies that come and go from the channel; new episodes from all HBO series, like Perry Mason and Last Week Tonight With John Oliver; and the past seasons of those programs as well as the full HBO back catalog, like Game of Thrones, Silicon Valley, Veep and The Wire; plus all of the HBO original films, documentaries and specials. 

Movies are a crucial part of the catalog. And any movie that’s available to watch on the traditional HBO network will also be available to stream on HBO Max. Highlights of the HBO Max film catalog will include (but may come and go as licensing changes):

  • The so-called Snyder cut of Justice League, slated to arrive on HBO Max in 2021.
  • DC films like Joker, Wonder Woman, Suicide Squad, Shazam, Aquaman and every Batman and Superman movie of the last 40 years.
  • Studio Ghibli anime films that have never been released for streaming in the US before.
  • Anime selections like Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood and other top titles from anime-focused streaming service Crunchyroll, which is also owned by AT&T. 
  • Classic movies like The Wizard of Oz, Casablanca, Citizen Kane, Gone With the Wind, Singin’ in the Rain, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Blade Runner: The Final Cut and many others.
  • Newer hits like The Invisible Man, Jojo Rabbit and Ford v Ferrari.

On top of that, AT&T has been licensing outside hit shows to beef up HBO Max’s catalog. The most eye-popping deals have been:

  • A reported $425 million deal for all episodes of ’90s hit Friends, which exited Netflix to start streaming on HBO Max at launch.
  • A reported $500 million deal to stream The Big Bang Theory.

It’s also secured deals for past seasons of Rick and Morty; 11 of the most recent seasons of Doctor Who, plus another three to come; CW dramas like Pretty Little Liars, Batwoman, and Riverdale spinoff Katy Keene as well as more upcoming CW series; The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air; The West Wing; and British series like Luther and Ricky Gervais’ original The Office, among many others. 

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

And HBO Max will have exclusive new shows and movies called Max Originals. For the most part, original series on HBO Max will drop new episodes on a weekly basis. Some of the originals have included:

  • Love Life, a romantic comedy starring Anna Kendrick and produced by Kendrick and Paul Feig, who is known for blockbuster comedies like Bridesmaids. 
  • Doom Patrol, the second season of the DC Universe series.
  • Adventure Time: Distant Lands-BMO, which is the first of four specials resurrecting Cartoon Network’s franchise Adventure Time.
  • Expecting Amy, a three-part docuseries about comedian Amy Schumer’s life on tour during her pregnancy.
  • American Pickle, the Seth Rogen comedy that is HBO Max’s first original film, about a 1920s immigrant who gets preserved in pickle brine for 100 years and meets his great-grandson (both characters portrayed by Rogen) in modern-day Brooklyn. 
  • Class Action Park, the indie doc about the world’s most dangerous theme park. 
  • Raised by Wolves, the sci-fi epic from director and executive producer Ridley Scott; the 10-episode series focuses on two androids raising human children on a mysterious planet.

Then over the course of the fall and beyond, HBO Max will add other originals, including: 

  • The Witches, the new movie based on the classic book starring Octavia Spencer and Anne Hathaway.
  • The Flight Attendant, starring and executive produced by Kaley Cuoco based on the novel by Chris Bohjalian.
  • The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Reunion Special, getting the series’ remaining cast members together for a family reunion on set in the Banks’ home.
  • Superintelligence, a movie starring Melissa McCarthy about an all-power artificial intelligence that chooses to study the most average person on Earth.
  • The Friends unscripted cast reunion special.
  • A reboot of Pretty Little Liars.

Of HBO Max’s originals, about half are targeted at young adults aged 16 to 34, and the rest will be divided between more adult fare and kids and family content outside the HBO brand. 

Some of the other highlights of the originals in the pipeline for HBO Max include: 

  • New DC titles. A Green Lantern series that producer Greg Berlanti (a young-adult TV guru behind Riverdale and Arrow) says will travel to space and “promises to be our biggest DC show ever made.” Strange Adventures, a one-hour drama anthology series also produced by Berlanti that explores the intersecting lives of mortals and superhumans. DC Super Hero High will be a half-hour comedy from Elizabeth Banks, the producer and actress known for the Hunger Games films and 30 Rock, that’ll focus on a group of adolescent students at a boarding school for “gifted” kids.
  • Projects by J.J. Abrams. Abrams, known for a parade of television and box office hits, signed a megadeal with AT&T and WarnerMedia to make projects for the company. On HBO Max, he’ll help produce a show set in the Justice League Dark universe; Overlook, a thriller based on Stephen King’s The Shining and set in the Overlook Hotel; and a 1970s crime show called Duster. 
  • A half-hour comedy from actress-producer Issa Rae. Rae’s Rap Sh*t explores the music business in Miami through the eyes of three women: an upstart hip-hop duo and their hustling manager.
  • A half-hour comedy from actress/producer Mindy Kaling. College Girls (a working title) tracks three 18-year-old freshman roommates at Evermore College in Vermont. 
  • The Boondocks animated series is getting “two reimagined seasons” along with a 50-minute special originally planned for fall 2020. 
  • A new Jellystone animated series with the classic Hanna-Barbera characters from Warner Bros. Animation. 
  • Comedy specials from Conan O’Brien and the team behind his TBS show. They’ll be developing five stand-up specials for HBO Max: O’Brien will host two specials that feature short sets from multiple up-and-coming comics and curate hourlong sets from three comedians. That slate will join another one-hour special from comedian James Veitch.

The service will have a smaller slate of original films, between five and 10 per year, according to the original plan. Early highlights on the original movie slate include: 

  • A two-picture deal with Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine. 
  • A documentary about Anthony Bourdain.
  • A four-picture deal with Berlanti, including Unpregnant, a September release about two teenage girls who go on a road trip to New Mexico after one finds out she’s pregnant, based on the young adult novel by Jenni Hendriks and Ted Caplan.
  • Super Intelligence, a comedy starring Melissa McCarthy about a woman whose romantic life is selected for observation by artificial intelligence.
  • Bobbie Sue, a comedy feature starring Jane the Virgin’s Gina Rodriguez as an up-and-coming young lawyer who joins a stuffy Boston law firm.



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