Report: 92% of HBO Max Customers Are Satisfied with Ad-Supported Tier; Nearly 30% Higher than discovery+
The ad-supported streaming revolution is continuing to sweep the nation. Free or lower-cost streaming options that feature commercials are becoming much more popular amongst cord-cutters as economic concerns exand around the country. A recent study indicates that 60% of U.S. households watch at least one FAST (free ad-supported streaming TV) channel, and that number is continuing to grow.
Now, a new report by Whip Media highlights that customers are not only watching ad-supported streaming, but they are also enjoying it. The service that received the most praise is a company that needs some good news: HBO Max.
According to the study, 92% of HBO Max customers report themselves as “satisfied” with the company’s ad-supported alternative. That’s eight points higher than the next highest satisfaction score, with 84% of Hulu customers reporting their satisfaction with its ad-supported tier.
The survey digs a little deeper as well, showing some of the reasons customers are so satisfied with HBO Max. Shows on the Warner Bros. Discovery streamer carry, at most, four minutes of ads per hour, one of the lowest numbers of any ad-supported streaming service. Additionally, HBO Originals do not currently feature ads, even on the ad-supported tier.
Users of HBO Max were the most likely to report that they saw less commercials than expected, with 20% of responders in agreement. By contrast, only 2% of Hulu users said they saw fewer commercials than expected. HBO Max customers were also less likely to be annoyed by the commercials that they did see, with 62% reporting they were not annoyed by the ads at all.
The high rate of customer satisfaction comes at a convenient time for Warner Bros. Discovery. Recent disappearances of shows and movies, combined with last week’s abrupt cancellation of “Batgirl” have left many concerned about the company's brand.
That brand will certainly be helped by the company’s commitment to its users experience. HBO Max updated its mobile and desktop apps recently, improving the user interface, as part of a nearly year-long refresh of the streamer’s apps across all devices. Considering the relatively high cost of an HBO Max subscription ($9.99/month for ad-supported, or $14.99/month for ad-free), it’s encouraging to see the company’s follow-through for users.
The report wasn’t all good news for Warner Bros. Discovery, however. The company’s other streaming platform discovery+ had the lowest satisfaction score for both its ad-free and ad-supported tiers. Only 64% of ad-watching customers reported that they were happy with the service. Considering the impending merger of the two platforms, it would be wise for WBD to figure out what they’re doing right on HBO Max and wrong on discovery+.
discovery+ is a video streaming service that offers more than 70,000 episodes of 2,500+ current and classic shows from several popular TV brands including Discovery, Investigation Discovery, HGTV, TLC, Food Network, A&E, Lifetime, and History.
The service primarily focuses on non-fiction programming or “reality” TV shows.
discovery+ is available with limited ads for $4.99 / month or ad-free for $6.99 / month.