How HBO Max Can Improve the Streaming Service Landscape for Itself

The upcoming streaming service joins the plethora of services already on the market and in the pipeline, including a chunk owned by WarnerMedia. 

It seems every company is launching their own streaming service, the digital landscape has become cluttered and difficult for the average consumer to navigate. When Netflix launched in April of 1998, little did they know they would quickly become the forefront of a new industry. 

Netflix started the trend of cable cutting, consumers dropping the expensive television channels in favor of a system where they could stream everything together. But with NBCUniversal launching the Peacock, The Walt Disney Company launching Disney+, and WarnerMedia launching HBO Max, many people have sited that the new streaming services have just ushered in a new form of premium channels which directly lead to the increase of piracy, and decrease of cable subscriptions. 

In the past two years Warner Bros. has launched two new streaming services Boomerang in 2017 which is home to Hanna-Barbera and Looney Tunes, and DC Universe in 2018. These services joined the other load of streaming services already provided by WarnerMedia including, HBO GO, HBO Now, Crunchy Roll, The CW Seed, The CW app, the Cartoon Network app, the TNT app, the TBS app, and the Warner Archive app which was discontinued last autumn. Warner Bros. has significantly contributed to the congested digital landscape.

The best route for WarnerMedia would be to fold the existing streaming services into HBO Max, too many services are currently provided, and the likely scenario is the return to piracy. Over the last 40 years, since 1985 when Turner acquired the MGM film library, the library of WarnerMedia has been continuously expanding. From buying Turner Entertainment and its catalog, to the purchase of Hanna-Barbera, WarnerMedia has control of the largest entertainment library in history, larger than Disney, and Universal. This library is the key to inciting subscribers into joining the most costly streaming service providing, costing between $16 and $20 monthly.

HBO Max will be the exclusive streaming service providing Friends, Doctor Who, The Big Bang Theory, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, and Pretty Little Liars, in addition to hours of original programming including two more seasons of the cult favorite show The Boondocks from Adult Swim. In the preview for the service the logos of, Boomerang, Cartoon Network, CNN, TBS, Warner Bros., Adult Swim, TruTV, New Line Cinema, and DC Comics all make an appearance. Which raises the question, if all of the companies that already have apps are going to be present on HBO Max, then why not just fold them in officially, shutter the other services and clean up the digital landscape? 

One stark difference between HBO Max and DC Universe, when the latter premiered everyone took note on the lack of films from The Worlds of DC, commonly referred to as the DC Extended Universe. Where as DC Universe didn't include the multi-billion dollar film series, HBO Max has used clips from the hit film Wonder Woman in it's premiere announcement.

The #ReleaseTheSnyderCut movement has been vocal about the hope that the Zack Snyder directors cut of the film will be released on the streaming service. Whether or not the film which Jason Momoa called, "ssssiiicccckkkkkk," gets released, we know HBO Max will feature shows like Gremlins: The Secret of Mogwai an animated Gremlins prequel, a Gossip Girl reboot, and The Flight Attendant starring Kaley Cuoco.

If WarnerMedia plays their cards right, with the library of shows and movies they own, in addition to the hours of original programming they've greenlit. Taking the best aspects of the streaming services they already offer, such as the ability to read comics on DC Universe and incorporating them into HBO Max, and preceding to do away with the other services, HBO Max could be the dominate most appealing service available to subscribers.


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