(Cybertech) – WarnerMedia and AT&T have announced HBO Max will be available at a cheaper price starting in June 2021.
But there’s a caveat: It will be an ad-supported plan, likely designed to encourage subscriber growth for the streaming service. No additional information about the price or even a specific launch date was revealed, but AT&T said it will reveal more in the coming months.
HBO Max is also launching in about 60 markets outside of the US this year – 39 territories in Latin America and the Caribbean in late June and another 21 territories in Europe in the second half of the year. HBO-branded streaming services in Europe will be upgraded to HBO Max.
As for HBO Max’s ad-supported plan, AT&T is subsequently raising subscriber targets for both 2021 and 2025, with the company expecting to end 2021 with about 67 million to 70 million subscribers worldwide and end 2025 with about 120 million and 125 million subscribers.
Keep in mind HBO and HBO Max ended 2020 with a combined 41 million subscribers, though less than half activated their HBO Max upgrade.
HBO Max’s cheaper ad-supported plan will basically be the same as the more expensive plan that costs $15 – except for same-day theatrical releases. Customers on the ad-supported plan can’t watch Dune when it releases, for example.
And although the ad-supported plan will run ads, they won’t play on HBO original titles such as The Sopranos and Game of Thrones.
Writing by Maggie Tillman.