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HBO Max Reaches Deal to Bring Streaming Service to Roku Devices

Jason Gurwin

Roku and HBO Max have finally reached a deal to bring the streaming service to Roku streaming players and Roku TVs. HBO Max will appear on Roku streaming players starting tomorrow, December 17.

For existing subscribers, the HBO app with automatically update to the HBO Max app. New customers will be able to download and subscribe to the service from the Roku Channel Store.

The two sides reached a deal ahead of the December 25 release of Wonder Woman 1984, which will be released simultaneously in-theaters and on HBO Max. Warner Bros. will be releasing their entire 2021 slate both in-theaters and on HBO on the same day.

“We believe that all entertainment will be streamed and we are thrilled to partner with HBO Max to bring their incredible library of iconic entertainment brands and blockbuster slate of direct to streaming theatrical releases to the Roku households with more than 100 million people that have made Roku the No. 1 TV streaming platform in America,” said Scott Rosenberg, Senior Vice President, Platform Business, Roku.

With the addition of Roku and Amazon Fire TV this month, HBO Max is now available on all major platforms. HBO Max was previously available on Roku devices, by using AirPlay from your iPhone, iPad, or Mac to your Roku streaming player or Roku TV.

Earlier this week, HBO Max became available on Xfinity X1 and Flex devices, as well as PS5 consoles.

“HBO Max is an incredible product with an unparalleled content offering that puts the consumer at the center, and we’re thrilled that Roku users will be able to experience all the great stories HBO Max has to offer,” said Tony Goncalves, Chief Revenue Officer, WarnerMedia. “We’re breaking new ground in the months ahead, and we can’t wait to work with our longtime partners at Roku to build on our past successes and bring HBO Max’s best-in-class quality entertainment to Roku’s large and highly engaged audience.

WarnerMedia negotiations with Roku and Amazon Fire TV have been longwinded. When HBO Max couldn’t strike a deal with either company prior to launching, many assumed the streamer’s subscriber numbers would be affected, however, the top brass at AT&T and WarnerMedia has said their numbers have been better than they expected.

In an interview with Decider, head of HBO Max, Andy Forssell also doubled down on the sentiment, saying that though they were not on Roku or Fire TVs, users with those devices also have other ways to access the service.

“A lot of those households also have an Apple TV or other device, so we’re not blocked out of those living rooms,” Forssell stated. “In some cases, we are. We’ve already exceeded our goals for 2020, and we’re very happy with the outcomes thus far even without those devices. Expanding distribution to those devices will help us accelerate the growth of the service.”

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