The streaming service battle is already heating up with Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and now Disney+ in the market, but soon WarnerMedia will be entering the fray with HBO Max. The service will have plenty of content from Warner's library, but it will also need to entice people to give this new ecosystem a chance, and it's attempting to do that by leveraging those who are already signed up for HBO. AT&T Chief Operating Officer John Stankey recently revealed that HBO Max will be available starting in the spring free of charge to 10 million AT&T customers who are also subscribers of HBO in the United States (via Reuters).
That's a great deal for those who are customers of both services, and means they won't have to pay the $14.99 monthly fee of HBO Max, which is the highest priced streaming service so far. Apple sits at the low end with $4.99 followed by Disney+ at $6.99, Hulu at $7.99, and Netflix at $12.99, with HBO Max's $14.99 sitting at the top. We aren't sure where NBC Universal's Peacock will end up, but likely somewhere in the middle.
AT&T has some high aspirations for its service as far as users. AT&T wants to reach around 80 million global subscribers and around 50 million in the United States by 2025, so leveraging its existing user base on other AT&T platforms is a must if it hopes to do that. WarnerMedia also said that it will introduce an ad-supported tier in 2021, which would likely bring in more users. There are also plans to add live programming to the service as well.
Now, HBO as a whole boasts 35 million subscribers, and the plan is to eventually try and bring all of those over to HBO Max. There are some hurdles to get there though, as outside of the 10 million AT&T holds the others will require reworked deals with TV providers, and as Reuters notes, those providers won't necessarily be open to helping WarnerMedia consolidate everyone under one roof.
On its own, the promotion makes total sense and is a no-brainer if you are already part of the AT&T family. It remains to be seen if AT&T can hit those lofty 2025 targets.