HBO Now

HBO Now is a subscription video on demand service operated by American premium cable and satellite television network HBO. Officially unveiled on March 9 and launched on April 7, 2015[1] the service allows subscribers on-demand access to HBO's library of original programs, films and other content on personal computers, smartphones, tablet devices and digital media players.[2]

Unlike HBO Go, HBO's online video on demand service for existing subscribers of the linear television channel, HBO Now is available as a standalone service and does not require a television subscription to use, targeting cord cutters who use competing services such as Netflix and Hulu. As of February 2018, HBO Now has 5 million subscribers.[3]

HBO NOW
HBONOW-logo
Type of site
Video on demand
Available inEnglish
FoundedOctober 15, 2014
HeadquartersNew York City, New York,
Area servedUnited States
OwnerWarnerMedia
Key peopleKevin Reilly
(CCO, WarnerMedia Direct-to-consumer.)
ServicesOTT streaming service
ParentWarnerMedia Entertainment
Websitehbonow.com
RegistrationMonthly subscription through authorized distributor required to access content
Users5 million paying subscribers (2018)
LaunchedApril 7, 2015[1]

Development

On October 15, 2014, following a trial of a similar service in Nordic Europe, HBO announced plans to launch an online, subscription video on demand service in the United States in 2015. This new service would be geared towards cord cutters – consumers who primarily use online video services to view television programs rather than subscribe to cable or satellite television – and would not have to be purchased as part of a television subscription, therefore also making it a competitor to services such as Netflix. This contrasts with HBO's existing online video on demand service, HBO Go, which is only accessible to those who have subscribed to HBO through a television provider.[4][5]

On December 9, 2014, it was reported that HBO had outsourced development of the service's infrastructure to Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM), who also developed the infrastructures used by WatchESPN and WWE Network. The network was previously working on a new platform codenamed "Maui"; however HBO, especially after major outages of HBO Go that occurred during several recent season premieres of high-profile HBO series, felt that outsourcing the service to a third-party would bring lower risk to the project. Otto Berkes stepped down as the company's Chief Technical Officer following this move.[6]

The service was officially unveiled as HBO Now during an Apple press event on March 9, 2015.[7] It was also announced that Apple would be the service's exclusive launch partner, with the HBO Now app being exclusive to Apple TV and iOS devices for a three-month period following the service's launch.[8][2][9] HBO Now content can also be accessed on its website. HBO Now officially went live on April 7, 2015, to coincide with the April 12 premiere of the fifth season of Game of Thrones.[1] Apple keeps 15% of the monthly subscription fee from users who sign up from an iOS device.[10]

Following the end of the exclusivity period, HBO Now for Android and Amazon Kindle Fire was released on July 16, 2015.[11] HBO Now apps for Xbox 360 and Xbox One were released on April 21, 2016.[12] On September 15, Sony announced that HBO Now will be available on the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4, which was later released on September 29, 2016 in anticipation for the series premiere of Westworld on October 2, and that anyone that subscribed to HBO on PlayStation Vue would be able to access HBO Now at no extra cost.[13][14]

Content

HBO Now offers on-demand access to most of HBO's library of original series, but does not carry several past series such as Tales from the Crypt, Tenacious D, 1st & Ten, Da Ali G Show, or The Ricky Gervais Show.[15] The Larry Sanders Show and Arliss were initially unavailable but added in 2016 and 2018 respectively.[16][17] It also streams HBO's original films and documentaries, along with acquired films from its library through the cable channel's content partners (such as 20th Century Fox, Universal Pictures and HBO sister company Warner Bros. Pictures). Time Warner stated that at least 2,000 titles would be available upon the service's launch.[9]

Like with HBO Go, HBO Now strictly serves as a video on demand service and does not include access to near-real-time streams of HBO's linear channels – unlike similar (in particular, TV Everywhere) streaming services offered by other television networks.[9][18] HBO Now also does not include programming streams or content from sister premium service Cinemax, and Time Warner has indicated that it does not plan to launch a companion standalone service for that network in the near term.[19]

Availability

HBO Now is only available to customers in the United States, and certain U.S. territories. Due to regional rights restrictions, HBO cannot offer the service outside of the country, and its terms of use explicitly forbid the service from being used outside the United States. Users from outside the U.S. that are detected to have used services such as virtual private networks (VPN) to evade the geo-blocking to use HBO Now are subject to have their services terminated with no refund.[20][21]

In Canada, Bell Media owns the exclusive rights to HBO programming for its Crave pay TV service (formerly The Movie Network, and including the HBO Canada multiplex channel), the Crave streaming service (formerly CraveTV), and the French language Super Écran service. Although CraveTV carried some HBO library programming upon its launch in late 2014, at that point new HBO programming remained exclusive to Bell's linear pay channels. In November 2018, CraveTV and TMN combined operations as "Crave", with current HBO programming made available on a direct-to-consumer streaming basis in Canada (similar to HBO Now) for the first time.[22][23]

On April 1, 2015, as part of an agreement with Time Warner that renewed its carriage contract for the Turner Broadcasting System networks and gave its over-the-top television service Sling TV distribution rights to the linear HBO channel, Dish Network secured an option to become a distribution partner for HBO Now following the exclusivity period with Apple.[24][25] HBO content is also available as a premium add-on for Amazon Video, DirecTV Now, Hulu, PlayStation Vue for the same $14.99 price as HBO Now.[26]

The over-the-top service was launched in Latin America in June 2017, although under the name HBO Go.

Reception

Analysts predicted HBO Now had over one million paying subscribers on iOS platforms in July 2015.[27] In February 2016, Time Warner disclosed that HBO Now had over 800,000 paying subscribers, by February 2017 it had two million.[28][29] And a year later in February 2018, it has grown to five million.[3]

References

  1. ^ a b c Baumgartner, Jeff (April 7, 2015). "'HBO Now' Goes Live". Multichannel News. NewBay Media.
  2. ^ a b "HBO Now coming in April for $14.99 per month, Apple TV price cut to $69". The Verge. Vox Media. March 9, 2015.
  3. ^ a b "HBO's Online Channel Surpasses 5 Million U.S. Subscribers".
  4. ^ "HBO To Launch Stand-Alone Online Service, Without Cable, In 2015: Time Warner Investor Day". Deadline Hollywood. Penske Media Corporation. October 15, 2014. Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  5. ^ "HBO Go-It-Alone: There Goes the Cable Bundle?". The Atlantic. Atlantic Media. October 15, 2014. Retrieved October 16, 2014.
  6. ^ "HBO CTO Otto Berkes Resigns After Network Enlists MLB to Build OTT Platform". Variety. Penske Media Corporation. Retrieved December 10, 2014.
  7. ^ "HBO Now on Apple TV Hands On". The Verge. April 7, 2015. Retrieved April 7, 2015.
  8. ^ "You won't be able to buy HBO Now directly from HBO". The Verge. Vox Media. March 16, 2015.
  9. ^ a b c "HBO officially announces April launch of HBO Now at Apple event". Gigaom. Retrieved March 9, 2015.
  10. ^ "Apple only takes 15% cut on HBO Now, Netflix, and Hulu subscriptions". Cult of Mac. April 13, 2015.
  11. ^ "HBO Now moves beyond Apple, arrives on Android and Amazon devices". The Verge. Retrieved 20 September 2015.
  12. ^ "HBO Now launches on Xbox One, 360, ending winter for Game of Thrones fans". Ars Technica. Retrieved 22 April 2016.
  13. ^ "HBO and Cinemax Coming to PS Vue, HBO NOW Launching Soon on PS4, PS3". PlayStation.Blog. Retrieved 20 September 2017.
  14. ^ Dwayne Benefield. PS Vue: HBO, Cinemax, New Ultra Plan Arrive Today, playstation.com, September 29, 2016.
  15. ^ Erik Adams, Sam Adams; Phil Dyess-Nugent, Will Harris and Kyle Ryan (May 15, 2013). "It's not TV—and it's not available on HBO Go: 27-plus HBO originals unavailable from the streaming service". The A.V. Club.
  16. ^ It's Official: 'The Larry Sanders Show' Coming to HBO Go and HBO Now in September. The Hollywood Reporter. 30 July 2016.
  17. ^ HBO Original Series Arli$$: The Art of the Sports Superagen Available to Stream on HBO NOW and HBO GO Starting September 14, 2018. The Futon Critic. 23 August 2018.
  18. ^ Nick Jesdanun (March 16, 2015). "3 things to know about HBO's new streaming service". The Arizona Republic. Gannett Company. Associated Press. Retrieved March 23, 2015.
  19. ^ Adam Epstein (March 11, 2015). "What does HBO Now mean for budding Cinemax?". Quartz. Atlantic Media.
  20. ^ "HBO Now users outside US to be 'cut off'". BBC News. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  21. ^ "HBO is cracking down on Canadians accessing streaming service HBO Now". Financial Post. 22 April 2015. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  22. ^ "All-New Crave Features HBO Collection". TVCanada. 2018-11-01. Retrieved 2018-11-01.
  23. ^ "HBO Goes Direct to Consumer in Canada to Challenge Netflix". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2018-11-01.
  24. ^ Joe Flint; Shalini Ramachandran (April 1, 2015). "Turner and Dish Reach New Distribution Pact". The Wall Street Journal. News Corp. Retrieved April 6, 2015. (subscription required)
  25. ^ Chris Welch (April 1, 2015). "HBO is coming to Sling TV this month". The Verge. Vox Media. Retrieved April 6, 2015.
  26. ^ 6 Ways to Watch HBO. Consumer Reports.
  27. ^ "Analysts: HBO Now already has about a million subscribers". Quartz. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
  28. ^ "HBO Now Has 800,000 Paid Streaming Subscribers, Time Warner Says". Retrieved 11 February 2016.
  29. ^ Littleton, Cynthia (8 February 2017). "HBO Now Grows to More Than 2 Million Domestic Subscribers". Retrieved 20 September 2017.

External links

2016 Webby Awards

The 20th annual Webby Awards for 2016 was held at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City on May 16, 2016, which was hosted by comedian and actor Nick Offerman. The awards ceremony was streamed live on the Webby Awards website. Judges from the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences picked the over one hundred winners, which may or may not match the people's choice.

The Webby for Lifetime Achievement was awarded to The Onion, having earned over 39 Webbys for its humor over the past 20 years.

7 Days in Hell

7 Days in Hell is a mockumentary directed by Jake Szymanski and written by Murray Miller. The film premiered on July 11, 2015 on HBO and July 8 on HBO Now. The film was inspired by the Isner–Mahut marathon men's singles match at the 2010 Wimbledon Championships.

Acting coach

An acting coach or drama coach is a teacher who trains performers–typically film, television, theatre and, musical theatre actors–and gives them advice and mentoring to enable them to improve their acting and dramatic performances, prepare for auditions and prepare better for roles.

After the Thrones

After the Thrones is an American live television aftershow that premiered on April 25, 2016, and ended on June 28, 2016. It was hosted by Andy Greenwald and Chris Ryan who discussed episodes of the HBO television series Game of Thrones. The talk show is executive produced by Bill Simmons and Eric Weinberger. Greenwald and Ryan previously hosted a podcast version of the show titled Watch the Thrones on Simmons' Grantland website. A similar talk show called Thronecast airs on British channel Sky Atlantic, which also discusses episodes of Game of Thrones.

The talk show was made available to HBO and HBO Now subscribers, and airs on the Monday following each episode of Game of Thrones. After the show's cancellation, Greenwald and Ryan, along with Simmons, made a similar live stream video podcast for distribution on Twitter called Talk the Thrones. Although it covers the same subject matter, it is a different production.

Apple TV Channels

Apple TV Channels is a service of Apple Inc. that aggregates content from popular over the top video on demand a la carte subscription services. First revealed in March 2019, it is designed to simplify the process of subscribing to and viewing that content by making those services purchasable and accessible in one video content hub, so the consumer need not use each service's own sign-up mechanism or view the content through each service's own app or website. The payment method can also be centralized through Apple's own billing service.Because the content is from paid subscription services, it will be ad-free. Content can also be downloaded to the device for offline viewing, and there is an option to share accounts within families.The service is designed to compete with Amazon's Prime Video Amazon Channels service, which similarly makes multiple subscription premium networks available in one location.It can be accessed through Apple's Apple TV app, which is available for the Apple TV microconsole and iOS devices, and is slated for 2019 offering on Mac computers, numerous smart television models, Roku devices, and Amazon Fire TV devices.Apple TV Channels, along with the simultaneously announced Apple TV+ over-the-top ad-free subscription web television service, is part of the company's concerted effort to expand its service revenues by making recurring monthly charge distributed video content available widely to the public.Major partners announced include Showtime, HBO, Epix, and CBS All Access. The broad reach of the 1.4 billion Apple devices in use globally, including 900 million iPhones, induced major services, some of which already have their own content distribution systems, to make deals with Apple.Netflix declined to be involved with the service, with Netflix CEO Reed Hastings saying that Netflix chose not to integrate its service's programming into Apple TV Channels because "we prefer to have our customers watch our content in our service." Viewers might be unaware that the content they were viewing was created or distributed by Netflix, and Netflix would have received little or no data about persons viewing and subscribing to Netflix via Apple TV Channels.The CEO of AT&T, Randall Stephenson, during an on-stage discussion with CNBC's Andrew Ross Sorkin at a fintech event, pushed back on the suggestion that content providers, like AT&T's HBO – which currently supports tvOS and iOS via HBO Go and HBO Now, that make their video available through Apple TV Channels would "not have the same level of access to the data", to "see what everybody's really watching and be able to make certain decisions", by insisting that AT&T's digital distribution deals provide it "access to data ... critical to advertising delivery, [ ] critical to marketing".

Arliss

Arliss (rendered in its logo as Arli$$) is an American sitcom about a sports agent. The series premiered on HBO in 1996 and ended in 2002. All episodes were available for streaming on HBO Now, HBO Go and HBO On Demand as of September 14, 2018.

Cord-cutting

In broadcast television, cord-cutting refers to the pattern of viewers, referred to as cord-cutters, cancelling their subscriptions to multichannel subscription television services available over cable, dropping pay television channels or reducing the number of hours of subscription TV viewed in response to competition from rival media available over the Internet such as Amazon Prime, Crunchyroll, Hulu, Netflix, Philo, Sling TV and YouTube Premium. This Internet content is either free or significantly cheaper than the same content provided via cable.

As a market trend, a growing number of "cord cutters" do not pay for subscription television in favour of some combination of broadband Internet and IPTV, digital video recorders, digital terrestrial television and/or free-to-air satellite television broadcasts. A related group, the cord-nevers, have never used commercial cable for television service, relying on internet sources from the start. A number of purely internet television services, part of the wider IPTV concept, have emerged to cater to these groups.

GTA Teleguam

GTA Teleguam (GTA) is the principal telecommunications company in Guam, providing telephone, cellular, internet and television services to residents of the island. The firm is based in Tamuning.The majority owner of GTA Telegaum is the Japanese firm Advantage Partners LLP, through its private equity investment funds. Advantage completed the purchase of GTA in 2011 following approval of the deal by the United States Federal Communications Commission and the Guam Public Utilities Commission. The President and Chief Executive Officer of GTA is Robert W. Haulbrook, Jr.

GlobeCast World TV

GlobeCast World TV was a television via satellite service received in North America via the Galaxy 19 satellite, providing ethnic television and audio channels. It was a service by Globecast, a subsidiary of Orange. In North America, the satellite broadcasts dozens of Arabic and Asian channels.

The direct-to-home service was providing free-to-air and Nagravision-encrypted channels. The pay TV service was shut down at the end of 2013, but the free-to-air channels remain available on Galaxy 19. The brand World TV and the associated web site are now terminated.

In Europe, the GlobeCast World TV service was officially launched in June 2007, but was discontinued in 2008. It was received via Intelsat 905 satellite and was providing a bouquet of ethnic TV channels from India and Pakistan.

Also, in 2012 and 2013, Globecast operated MyGlobeTV, a set of Internet-delivered pay-TV ethnic packages to connected devices: Netgem Internet set-top-box, iOS and Android devices.

HBO

HBO is an American premium cable and satellite television network owned by AT&T's WarnerMedia. The programming featured on the network consists primarily of theatrically released motion pictures and original television shows, along with made-for-cable movies, documentaries and occasional comedy and concert specials.

HBO is the oldest and longest continuously operating pay television service (basic or premium) in the United States, having been in operation since November 8, 1972. In 2016, HBO had an adjusted operating income of US$1.93 billion, compared to the US$1.88 billion it accrued in 2015. HBO has 130 million subscribers worldwide as of 2016. The network provides seven 24-hour multiplex channels, including HBO Comedy, HBO Latino, HBO Signature, and HBO Family. It launched the streaming service HBO Now in April 2015 and has over 2 million subscribers in the United States as of February 2017.

HBO Europe

HBO Europe is a premium television group of channels by HBO. It is available as a group of film channels and VOD operate in Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Slovenia, Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Moldova while VOD-only with original programming is available in Spain, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Portugal.

The first channel was launched by HBO and Sony Pictures in Hungary on September 28, 1991. This was followed by the launch in Czech Republic, in 1994. In 1995 Walt Disney entered in joint-venture. In Poland was launched in 1996, a launch in Slovakia in 1997, 1998 in Romania,1999 in Moldova, 2002 in Bulgaria, 2004 in Croatia and Slovenia 2006 in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro and 2009 in Macedonia.

In 2010 Time Warner acquired from Sony and Disney all shares and became first fully owned subsidiary outside US.

HBO has been available in the Netherlands as well. It was a joint venture between Time Warner and cable company Ziggo. It launched on 9 February 2012 but closed on 31 December 2016. Ziggo has acquired the broadcasting licenses of HBO content for the Dutch market.

HBO Family (Asia)

HBO Family is a Southeast Asian pay television channel owned HBO Asia featuring Hollywood blockbuster movies.

HBO Go

HBO Go is a TV Everywhere service offered by the American premium cable network HBO. It allows HBO subscribers to stream video on demand selections of HBO content, including current and past series, films, specials, and sporting events, through either the HBO website, or apps on mobile devices, video game consoles, and digital media players. The service first launched on February 18, 2010.

MLB Advanced Media

MLB Advanced Media (MLBAM) is a limited partnership of the club owners of Major League Baseball (MLB) based in New York City and is the Internet and interactive branch of the league.

Robert Bowman, president and CEO of MLBAM, indicated in May 2012 that MLBAM generates around $620 million a year in revenue. Forbes went as far as calling the company "the Biggest Media Company You've Never Heard Of".The company operates the official web site for the league and the thirty Major League Baseball club web sites via MLB.com, which draws four million hits per day. The site offers news, standings, statistics, and schedules, and subscribers have access to live audio and video broadcasts of most games. The company also employs reporters, with one assigned to each team for the season and others serving more general beats. MLB Advanced Media also owns and operates BaseballChannel.tv and MLB Radio.

MLBAM also runs and/or owns the official web sites of Minor League Baseball, YES Network (the television broadcaster of the New York Yankees), SportsNet New York (the television broadcaster of the New York Mets). It has also provided the backend infrastructure for WWE Network, WatchESPN, ESPN3, HBO Now, and PGA Tour Live.MLBAM as of January 2018 also is involved with video game development, production and publication, they currently own the IP of the R.B.I. Baseball franchise and had produced and published R.B.I. Baseball 14, 15, 16 and 17 and developed, produced and published R.B.I. Baseball 18, as a result, the MLB is the only major sports league that is producing its own video game.

PlayStation Vue

PlayStation Vue (PS Vue) is an American over-the-top (OTT) Internet television service that is owned by the Sony Interactive Entertainment subdivision of the Sony Corporation of America division of Sony. Launching with a limited major-market rollout on March 18, 2015, the service – which is structured in the style of a multichannel video programming distributor – combines live TV (incorporating a lineup of various cable-originated television channels), on-demand video, and cloud-based DVR to stream television programs, movies, and sporting events directly to a PlayStation console or other supported device – including smart TVs, digital media players and apps – without a subscription to a cable or satellite television provider. Targeting cord cutters, PlayStation Vue is designed to complement subscription video-on-demand services. As of September 2018, the service had approximately 745,000 subscribers.

Spectrum TV Stream

Spectrum TV Stream is an American over-the-top internet television service owned by Charter Communications. The service – which is structured as a virtual multichannel video programming distributor – is only available to Charter Spectrum internet customers. It is designed as an alternative to other competing OTT skinny bundles for cord cutters, offering a selection of major cable channels and on-demand content that can be streamed through smart TVs, digital media players, and mobile apps.

The Red Woman

"The Red Woman" is the sixth season premiere episode of HBO's fantasy television series Game of Thrones, and the 51st overall. The episode was written by series creators David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, and directed by Jeremy Podeswa.

The body of Jon Snow is discovered by Ser Davos Seaworth and loyal members of the Night's Watch protect his lifeless body; Melisandre has begun to lose her faith in the Lord of Light; Sansa Stark and Theon Greyjoy flee Winterfell, Ellaria Sand and the Sand Snakes seize control of Dorne; Jaime Lannister returns to King's Landing with the body of his dead daughter; and Daenerys Targaryen is taken prisoner by the khalasar of Khal Moro.

"The Red Woman" was positively received by critics who found the episode to be a satisfactory launching point for the season, and praising the scenes involving Sansa and Brienne, as well as the closing reveal with Melisandre, although the Dorne storyline was criticized once again for feeling too abrupt and deviating greatly from the books. For filming of the episode's closing reveal, the director used similar technique to the body double of Cersei Lannister in the previous episode. The episode title is an allusion to the epithet used to describe the Red Priestess Melisandre. In the United States, the episode premiere achieved a viewership of 7.94 million in its initial broadcast, and a same-day total including the streaming services HBO Go and HBO Now of 10.7 million viewers, a record for the series.

United States Satellite Broadcasting

United States Satellite Broadcasting was a Saint Paul, Minnesota-based satellite television company that ran from 1981 to 1999. It was absorbed into DirecTV in 1999.

Xfinity Instant TV

Xfinity Instant TV is an American over-the-top internet television service owned by Comcast. The service – which is structured as a virtual multichannel video programming distributor – is only available to Comcast Xfinity internet customers. It is designed as an alternative to other competing OTT skinny bundles for cord cutters, offering a selection of major cable channels and on-demand content that can be streamed through smart TVs, digital media players, and mobile apps.

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