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HBO Max to offer a cheaper ad-supported tier by 2021

Published Oct 25th, 2019 3:51PM EDT

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There’s a lot we still don’t know about HBO Max, but there’s no denying that AT&T has extremely high hopes for its soon to be released streaming service. To this point, AT&T is hoping to net upwards of 80 million subscribers by 2025. It’s certainly an ambitious goal given that it took Netflix nearly 10 years to reach the 80 million threshold.

All that said, HBO Max does have a lot going for it in terms of content as it will house everything currently available on HBO along with a lot more content from a variety of top-tier sources, including TNT, CNN, Adult Swim, and more.

With AT&T looking to hit the ground running and boost its subscriber numbers as quickly as possible, AT&T COO John Stankey recently said that the company has a few ideas designed to result in rapid subscriber growth.

For starters, AT&T subscribers who already have HBO will be able to enjoy HBO Max at no extra charge. There’s also word that HBO Max — which will reportedly be priced at about $15/month — will eventually follow the Hulu model insofar that there will be a cheaper ad-supported version as soon as 2021. Offering a cheaper ad-supported tier is definitely a smart idea given that an estimated 70% of Hulu subscribers are currently on an ad-supported tier.

Engadget also adds:

There’s a chance HBO Max could be bundled with AT&T mobile plans, which would certainly boost the service’s user base. It’d align with efforts from rivals, such as T-Mobile bundling Netflix with some plans, Verizon offering Disney+ free for a year to some customers and Apple giving away a year of TV+ access with the purchase of an iPhone, iPad, Apple TV or Mac.

Suffice it to say, if you thought the streaming landscape was crowded with compelling options today, you haven’t seen nothing yet. At this point, it will be fascinating to see how it all plays out given that new streaming services — with Disney Plus and HBO Max being two prime examples — are coming to the party with huge catalogs of already-popular content. Disney of course has the Star Wars franchise and an absolute treasure trove of additional content. HBO Max, meanwhile, will have HBO content along with some intriguing exclusives such as the exclusive streaming rights to Friends.

Yoni Heisler Contributing Writer

Yoni Heisler has been writing about Apple and the tech industry at large with over 15 years of experience. A life long expert Mac user and Apple expert, his writing has appeared in Edible Apple, Network World, MacLife, Macworld UK, and TUAW.

When not analyzing the latest happenings with Apple, Yoni enjoys catching Improv shows in Chicago, playing soccer, and cultivating new TV show addictions.