HBO Max Announces October Launch in First European Countries
Six Nations — Including Spain And Nordic Countries — Set to Launch on October 26.
WarnerMedia says they will be launching HBO Max in Europe on October 26, with six nations — Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Spain, and Andorra — being first out of the gate.
The phased roll-out will continue in 2022, with 14 more countries getting in on the action — Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, and Slovenia. Additional territories will be launched during 2022, officials said.
HBO Max is limited in their ability to launch throughout Europe due to existing agreements. In markets like U.K., Germany, Italy and France, they have existing agreements with local pay TV partners, like Comcast’s Sky.
“This is a historic moment as HBO Max lands in Europe,” said Johannes Larcher, Head of HBO Max International. “WarnerMedia movies and series like Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, and The Big Bang Theory are passionately consumed by fans all across Europe, and HBO Max has been created to provide them with the most intuitive and convenient viewing experience to watch these and a diverse range of other amazing titles.”
HBO Max will be available to new customers as well as existing customers of HBO España, HBO Nordic, and HBO Go.
“The unique and exclusive combination of iconic content from Warner Bros., HBO, DC, Cartoon Network, Max Originals, including local productions and more, creates a streaming platform that fans in Europe will love,” added Christina Sulebakk, General Manager, HBO Max EMEA. “We see enormous potential as we roll out the all-new, supercharged streaming platform across the region.”
HBO Max is a subscription video streaming service that gives access to the full HBO library, along with exclusive Max Originals, and access to every Warner Bros. film on HBO Max on the same day that it hits theaters.
HBO Max has two tiers, an ad-supported plan for US$9.99 and ad-free plan for US$14.99. HBO Max without ads also includes features like the ability to download offline and 4K streaming.
They also will get Max Originals that aren’t available to HBO channel subscribers, like “The Flight Attendant” (Kaley Cuoco), “Love Life” (Anna Kendrick), as well as reboots to “Sex In The City” and “Gossip Girl.”
In May of this year, HBO Max celebrated its one-year anniversary in the U.S., and in June it launched in 39 territories across Latin America and the Caribbean, marking its first availability outside the United States.
Pricing information was not immediately made available, but it is likely that it will be more in line with plans in the U.S. ($9.99-$14.99), than in Latin America, where it costs as low as $3 a month.
While HBO Max won’t face Hulu and Paramount+ directly in the European market, the forthcoming launch of SkyShowtime in Europe in 2022 poses a new head-to-head competition and a curious question as to who will have the competitive advantage in terms of content.
Additionally, with the expected 2022 closure of the merger between WarnerMedia and Discovery and the combination of streaming assets involved with HBO Max and Discovery+, the long-term competitive advantages provided by the two streaming giants when looking at their perches in a new European landscape will be unique, indeed.