Warner Bros. Discovery abandons merger of HBO Max and Discovery+
All that for this. Last year, Warner Bros. Discovery had interrupted the global (and French) launch of its HBO Max streaming platform to prefer to merge it with its Discovery + service available in the United States. The American group has finally backtracked, and will keep the two platforms very separate.
Discovery+ aside, HBO Max will become… Max
A decision that the Warner Bros. Discovery explains (in particular) by a fear of losing a large part of the 24 million subscribers of Discovery + at the time of its merger with HBO Max.
In the United States, HBO Max costs $16/month, or $10/month for the subscription with ads, while Discovery+ offers prices of $7 and $5 respectively. It was felt that a merger of the two streaming services would have taken Discovery+ subscribers too much of an effort to align, especially in this time of inflation.
The group has confirmed that Discovery+ will therefore remain available separately, in a new formula which will be launched in the spring. For its part, the HBO Max platform and its prestigious catalog (Game Of Thrones, The Sopranos, The Last of Us…) will also get a makeover, and should change its name to simply “Max”.
As a reminder, the HBO Max service was launched in 2020 in the United States, and today has more than 81.2 million subscribers, still far from Netflix (231 million) and Disney + (161.8). The platform should have been offered in several countries around the world and in France in early 2023, but this launch was interrupted following the merger between the WarnerMedia and Discovery groups last April. The new entity Warner Bros. Discovery now has more than 95 million subscribers to its various streaming services, and expects to reach 130 million by 2025.