In the midst of its second quarter 2022 earnings report, Warner Bros. Discovery confirmed that it plans to launch a new streaming service combining the content now hosted on HBO Max and Discovery+ during the summer of 2023.
This new entertainment proposal would initially arrive in the United States and then expand to Mexico and other Latin American markets in the fall of the following year. Europe, Asia and the Pacific will have to wait until 2024 to learn about the new service.
The company, in the voice of its CEO, David Zaslav, stated that the possibility of this new streaming service being free and financed around commercial and advertising agreements is being explored.However, some more options were put on the table that promise content on demand and live broadcasts with plans that range from free with advertising, to others of lower cost with commercials and one more free of any advertising intervention.
This confirms part of the rumors that broke the news this morning. Information shared by Grace Randolph In a Twitter thread, he predicted this scenario while echoing reports that nearly 70 percent of the staff behind HBO Max’s original series and movies would be laid off.
Goodbye HBO Max
This is an effort by Warner Bros. Discovery that clearly wants to make the technology and content that inhabits its two streaming services more efficient and scalable.
However, it became clear that the field of content on demand is not a priority for the company. The CEO made it clear that the priority is to take “aggressive measures to correct transmission costs”, with which the intention is for original productions to stand out at the box office.
“HBO Max has a competitive feature set, but has had performance and customer issues,” Zaslav said, hinting at the future of DC, a universe that will seek to emulate Marvel’s.
“We have done a reset, we have restructured the business that we are going to focus on, where they will be a team with a 10-year plan focused only on DC. It’s very similar to the structure that Alan Horn and Bob Iger came together very effectively with Kevin Feige at Disney. We believe we could build a much stronger long-term sustainable growth business outside of DC and as part of that we will be focused on quality,” Zaslav said.
The death of HBO Max seems to be sung and although for now there are no implications for subscribers, we will have to see what new ace Warner Bros. Discovery has up its sleeve to understand how the streaming market will move during the following year.