On Wednesday, Warner Bros. Discovery confirmed that it will combine its flagship streaming services Discovery+ and HBO Max to ‘Max’ by May 23.
The new service will house Discovery+’s broad TV offerings with some of HBO Max’s critically-acclaimed productions like The White Lotus and Succession.
The company explained that the HBO branding will be dropped to accommodate more family-friendly programming.
Price tiers will remain the same–at $9.99 and $15.99 per month–but a new premium plan will be introduced.
The ‘Max’ rebrand, explained
The new ‘Max’ service has been a long-time initiative for CEO David Zaslav, who had been planning the shift since the merger between Warner Bros and Discovery last year.
With this, Max is now set to compete with other global streaming platforms like Netflix and Hulu. In a statement by AT&T, the parent company of WarnerMedia and discovery+, “The new company will be able to invest in more original content for its streaming services, enhance the programming options across its global linear pay TV and broadcast channels, and offer more innovative video experiences and consumer choices.”
To keep you updated, discovery+ hosts channels like Discovery, food network, HGTV, TLC, and Animal Planet. Meanwhile, HBO Max houses CNN, adult swim, Cartoon Network, Warner Brothers, and HBO.
The new logo features a slightly updated logo. Warners Bros. Discovery drops the beautiful purple color for just the blue. But, the signature target symbol was added in the a for, for a slight touch of brand recognition.
The company explained that they are dropping the HBO brand from the name for a more family-friendly image.
JB Perrette, CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery for global streaming and games, said “We want [Max] to be welcoming to all and easily recognizable, including to a key customer segment, kids and families.”
In case you’re wondering, Max will be keeping the first two price tiers the same. They’re offering a new premium plan with access to 4K content though.
- Ad-lite plan ($9.99 per month)
- Ad-free plan ($15.99 per month)
- Ultimate plan ($19.99 per month)
With the ad-lite plan, viewers can get 2 concurrent streams with HD quality. The ad-free plan offers the same, minus the ads. Plus, it will let you download 30 pieces of content.
The ultimate plan lets you access 4K at HDR and Dolby Atmos, lets you access 4 concurrent streams, and 100 downloads.
What’s the future for ‘Max’
The new lineup for Max includes a highly controversial Harry Potter series reboot.
You can also expect a new season of Gremlins, The Penguin, and The Regime.
Not everyone is happy with the corporate restructuring though. Just a few hours after the announcement, the studios’ shares have fallen by 6% at the end of Wednesday.
It’s not an ideal situation for Warner Bros. Discovery, which had been toughening it out amid cost-cutting, layoffs, and other restructuring costs.
Twitter users are also not happy with the HBO brand omission.
Dying laughing that the rebrand is from “HBO Max” to “Max is where you can find HBO stuff.” pic.twitter.com/Fp4X7t2c4N
— Jeff Zhang 张佶润 (@strangeharbors) April 12, 2023
this is the weirdest rebrand. hbo is an extremely well-known brand that’s associated with some of the best tv shows ever. was there market research like “yeah we’re worried people think our streaming service might have too much good stuff on it” https://t.co/UJDa192cfa
— largest rodent (@capybaroness) April 12, 2023
It’s clear that fans will be missing the HBO brand in the new service. Whatever the case, we hope this new merge won’t push other projects and channels like Cartoon Network out of the frame.
What do you think of the HBO Max rebrand?
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