More than a year after the streaming service was pulled from Prime Video Channels (which sells third party streaming services through Amazon Prime), the tech giant and Warner Bros. Discovery said Tuesday that they have a new deal to bring HBO Max back.
HBO Max will be available beginning Dec. 6 for $14.99 per month (the cheaper ad-supported tier does not appear to be available as of now), and subscribers will have access to the new service that will include Discovery content when it launches next year. The current offering includes some 15,000 hours of content.
HBO Max left Amazon Prime Video Channels in September 2021, causing HBO Max to lose some 5 million subscribers in the process. Channels has proven itself as an adapt driver of subscribers to video services over the years, with Paramount+, AMC+ and Starz among the services using the platform.
But Amazon’s cut of the subscription price, as well as its control over the viewing environment, has made it a tough sell for some other services like Netflix and Disney+. Amazon of course has its own premium streaming service in Prime Video, and a free ad-supported offering in FreeVee, but the company wants to become a one-stop shop for video, hence its investment in Channels.
In addition, owning the platform also provides a rich set of data that can be extremely valuable to media and entertainment companies, though a statement from WBD chief revenue and strategy officer Bruce Campbell suggests that WBD will have access to at least some of the data Amazon collects.
“Warner Bros. Discovery is committed to making HBO Max available to as broad an audience as possible while also advancing our data-driven approach to understanding our customers and best serving their viewing interests,” Campbell said.
HBO Max was pulled from Amazon Channels by then-WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar, who wanted more direct control over the streaming environment. Under CEO David Zaslav, WBD has taken a more flexible approach, seeking to maximize revenues by striking a wide range of deals tied to both content and distribution. – Source: hollywoodreporter.com