Effective Wednesday, September 15, roughly five million HBO subscribers will no longer be able to access the premium channel through Amazon Channels. While those users were given a heads up before today’s big change, the move is part of the agreement reached between HBO and Amazon back in November 2020 that finally ended the stand-off between the content companies over allowing the HBO Max app on Amazon devices.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, HBO subscribers who lost access to their Amazon Channel subscription will be given a special offer in an effort to fully transition those users to the HBO Max app where WarnerMedia prefers them to be:
Speaking with Bloomberg last month, HBO Max chief Andy Forssell said HBO was willing to lose subscribers in the short-term if it meant cutting out the middleman — in this case, Amazon — and having a direct relationship with consumers instead. (HBO has also done the same with Roku and Apple TV.)
“It’s important for us to own the customer,” Forssell said. “If the viewer is in the app, we can tailor the home page to them. We can tailor what they show them next. We can respond to that in real time.”
While HBO Max was able to close last minute deals with Amazon and Roku just in time for Wonder Woman 1984‘s streaming release and WarnerMedia’s controversial move to put its entire 2021 film slate on the burgeoning app, AT&T made moves to dump WarnerMedia altogether just a few months later. Discovery is now on track to acquire WarnerMedia, which will give them control over the company’s vast media library as well as the HBO brand as it attempts to solidify its presence in the streaming wars.
(Via The Hollywood Reporter)