As we’ve touched on previously, the sheer volume of original programming being churned out by Netflix is unprecedented. Illustrating the company’s seeming obsession with original content, consider this: Netflix a few weeks ago promised to deliver 600 hours of original programming in 2016, a near 90% increase from the 320 hours of original programming it rolled out in 2014.
Without question, Netflix has its eyes on supplanting HBO as the outlet of choice when it comes to premium television. And with Netflix’s subscriber growth on the rise, HBO is hardly blind to the changing television landscape and is planning to react accordingly.
Recently, Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes relayed that HBO is hoping to roll out 600 hours of original programming in 2016, this according to a new report from The Motley Fool.
Bewkes did not say by how much the budget would increase, but the company allocated about $2 billion for total programming last year, about half of which went to originals. Netflix, meanwhile, has a total content budget of $6 billion, though it’s unclear how much of that is devoted to original programming. But with 30 in-house shows planned this year, including big budget thrillers like Marco Polo, it seems like a substantial portion would go to its own shows.
While any other company looking to take on Netflix at its own game would be fighting an uphill battle, HBO has the requisite resources, not to mention a unique eye for compelling content, to pull it off. This past November, for example, HBO inked a 4-year production deal with Jon Stewart along with an entirely new venture with Bill Simmons.
If we’re not there already, we’re likely fast approaching an environment where HBO and Netflix may be the only two subscriptions TV enthusiasts need to satiate their entertainment needs.