HBO GO is being retired July 31, 2020

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by morac, Jun 14, 2020.

  1. morac

    morac Cat God TCF Club

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    HBO Go is being retired by AT&T after July 31. After that there will only be HBO Max and HBO (previously HBO Now) for the few providers and devices who haven’t negotiated to include Max. HBO Go will be removed from devices, which presumably includes Tivo boxes. Since Tivo doesn’t support HBO Now (other than via Amazon Prime Channel), that would mean Tivo will be losing native HBO support (except on the Stream).

    HBO is changing the names of its apps again -- here's what you need to know
     
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  2. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    What's weird is they only support HBONow on the new Stream 4K.
     
  3. blacknoi

    blacknoi Active Member

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    So my wife likes the convenience of the hbo go app via our TE3 running bolt. We have the max app on Apple TV so it’s not a matter of access. It’s a matter of “staying on hdmi1” and using a consistent remote!

    So that means on this bolt I’m SOL, unless TiVo throws us a bone and actually adds the hbo max app to te3. Bummer.

    Realistically it shouldn’t be a stretch If HBO wants to put forth the effort in the TiVo echo system as Go and Now (and we know Max is just the re-branded / renamed Now app) are forks of the same code base. So Max is also from the same fork with different content filters.
     
  4. Tony_T

    Tony_T Well-Known Member

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    It looks like I now get HBO Max included with my HBO cable subscription (Optimum), but Roku has yet to strike a deal (it’s expected). If no Roku deal by July 31st, then, my understanding is that the Roku (and Amazon) HBO Go app will be replaced by the HBO app (which looks nothing more than a name change - so maybe HBO will throw a bone to TiVo and add the HBO app to the Bolt)
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2020
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  5. TivoJD

    TivoJD Active Member

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    I have HBO Max on stream 4k, no side loading either, from app store.
     
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  6. morac

    morac Cat God TCF Club

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    Based on what I’ve read, The HBO app is basically what is currently the HBO Now app. For platforms that negotiated to support HBO Max, the HBO Now app was renamed HBO Max, so I’m guessing on those platforms there won’t be an HBO app. It is a bit confusing with respect to Tivo though since nearly every platform except Tivo has both a Go and Now app.

    HBO is ending HBO Go, renaming HBO Now since HBO Max is live

     
  7. morac

    morac Cat God TCF Club

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    That’s because the Stream 4K is an Android TV device and HBO Max is supported on Android TV (and Apple devices).
     
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  8. CommunityMember

    CommunityMember New Member

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    All we know for sure at this point is that HBO has not announced a HBO app for the TiVo platform, and that the existing HBO Go app on all platforms have been announced to sunset at the end of July (although I would not be surprised if it does not suddenly stop working on exactly August 1st since that is a weekend).

    What that means for the (to be retired) HBO Go app on the TiVo platform has not been stated by either HBO or TiVo. However, one might imagine that if something was known to be happening in a positive direction at least TiVo (and likely HBO) would have said something by now. That TiVo, in particular, has not said anything positive suggests that they are instead planning for a press release of the form "TiVo and AT&T (HBO) are actively working together on a plan to bring a more modern application to TiVo customers" followed by crickets (they have done that before, so they have experience in that spin).
     
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  9. Noelmel

    Noelmel Active Member

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    No you just have to update the app from the google play store and it turns into MAX. Watching it right now. It’s totally fine on the android home screen. The TiVo side they are still working on just integrating the search part of it


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  10. wmcbrine

    wmcbrine Well-Known Mumbler

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    It's possible that they'll simply integrate the "Go" login method into the "HBO" (formerly "Now") app, since it's the only way they differed. It never did make much sense that these were separate apps. Starz and Showtime don't do that. Nor does "HBO Max", of course.

    And it never made sense that TiVo only supported Go and not Now, but I guess that's another story...
     
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  11. Tony_T

    Tony_T Well-Known Member

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    Go was for cable subscribers of HBO (free), Now was streaming subscription. Showtime has it also: Showtime Anytime (free for cable subscribers) and Showtime (subscription)

    And it’s not that TiVo didn’t support HBO Now, it’s that HBO didn’t make the App for TiVo. On the Bolt, most of the Apps are outdated (i.e. Hulu), better to just use a Roku or other device to stream.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2020
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  12. NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Here's the history. To start off, HBO wanted to provide a "TV everywhere" app for their cable subscribers so that they could watch HBO content on-demand when away from home (and therefore away from their cable/satellite boxes). So they rolled out the HBO Go app for mobile devices, as well as the HBO Go website for use on computers (e.g. laptops). Eventually, as TV-connected streaming devices like Roku and Apple TV got more popular, they brought the HBO Go app to those platforms too (even though if you're watching on those TV-connected platforms, you're probably watching at home, not "on the go" as the HBO Go name implies).

    Then, in 2015, HBO decided that they wanted to offer their service as a standalone on-demand streaming service to compete with Netflix and others. At this point, you might think they would have just changed the name of the HBO Go app to simply "HBO" and allowed all customers to log into it regardless of whether they subscribed and got billed via a traditional cable TV provider or via a digital/app store distributor (e.g. Apple, Google, Amazon, Roku, etc.). This, in fact, is how the new HBO Max app works; a single app for all HBO Max subscribers regardless of how they pay.

    Why didn't that happen back in 2015? Apparently because some cable operators didn't want it to happen. Comcast, in particular. My guess is that they didn't like the idea of their HBO subs using an app that made them aware that, "Hey, I no longer need my cable package in order to subscribe to HBO! I can now get it standalone, like Netflix!" So HBO -- the nation's original made-for-cable channel that launched way back in 1973 and rose to prominence by relying on partnerships with local cable operators -- chose to tread lightly and not upset their cable partners. They rolled out a new separate app (with the exact same catalog and back-end tech as HBO Go) for their new standalone streaming customers and gave it a different brand name, HBO Now.

    And the reason I believe I'm correct about this is because of what happened a few months later between Starz and Comcast. HBO and Showtime had launched their standalone streaming apps in spring 2015 and Starz followed suit, IIRC, that fall. Showtime had followed a similar strategy to HBO; their original TV everywhere app was branded Showtime Anytime and their new standalone streaming app was branded simply Showtime. But Starz instead chose to simplify things and just have one app. They replaced their original TV everywhere app, Starz Play, with a new app named Starz that would serve both their cable subs as well as their new standalone streaming subs. And Comcast rejected it. To this day, if you subscribe to Starz via Comcast, you cannot use your Comcast credentials to access the Starz app on any device. You must watch live and on-demand Starz content on your Comcast cable box (or CableCARD device) or via their Xfinity Stream app.

    A lot has changed in the five years since the launch of HBO Now, with the erosion of traditional cable TV and the rise of streaming apps. So WarnerMedia had a stronger hand to play and basically said to their cable distribution partners, "We're not going to distribute regular HBO anymore, we're only going to distribute HBO Max. So if you want to keep offering HBO to your customers in the future, you'll have to sell HBO Max. And we're only using one app for HBO Max, not two different apps that segregate those who pay via a traditional cable operator vs. those who pay via a digital distributor. And lastly, while you can continue to offer HBO content -- both live linear channels and on-demand content -- via your own UI, all of the additional non-HBO content from the HBO Max service will only ever be accessible through our own HBO Max app."

    This last demand, BTW, is the main point of contention between WarnerMedia and Amazon, who has ~5 million HBO subscribers through their Prime Video Channels platform that streams HBO content from Amazon's own servers through Amazon's own app/UI. Amazon wants to subsume all that additional non-HBO content from HBO Max into that Prime Video Channel too, so that their subs don't need to switch over to the separate HBO Max app for that stuff. But WarnerMedia won't allow it. Understandably, they want to gain a direct relationship with their HBO Max viewers so they have access to all that valuable usage data. Just as Netflix, Hulu and Prime Video won't allow their content to be ingested and streamed through third-party apps/UIs, WarnerMedia wants to move in that direction too. Who knows if that will ever happen with HBO-branded content but they're at least drawing the line with all that additional non-HBO content that HBO Max offers.
     
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  13. NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Well, one major media source that reported the story specifically said that the HBO Go app would be retired from "primary platforms" on July 31. Not sure what that means but it's not a stretch to think that TiVo doesn't qualify as a "primary platform". So maybe the HBO Go lives on on TiVo boxes for awhile longer.

    I'm sure TiVo would love for WarnerMedia to create a new HBO Max app that would work on all the TiVo DVRs that currently have the HBO Go app. So if an HBO Max app doesn't come to traditional TiVos -- and it probably won't -- I'd say it's just because WarnerMedia will decide it's not worth their investment to create and upkeep the app on a small platform that's shrinking and which has a very uncertain future. (And keep in mind that TiVo's next-gen app platform for certain newer devices is Android TV, which does have the HBO Max app already.)

    Still though, traditional TiVo DVRs are used by some of HBO's smaller cable TV partners (e.g. RCN, Atlantic Broadband, etc.) as the operator's own cable boxes. So maybe they'll allow the HBO Go app to quietly live on on the TiVo platform indefinitely? Or maybe HBO won't care about that because those operators presumably have incorporated the HBO content into their own on-demand platform. RCN, for instance, has an on demand app that they've deployed on the TiVo boxes they provide.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2020
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  14. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    I meant the guide data part in the TiVo app. I too have the Max app, which is the beauty of it being Android TV, no need to wait for TiVo to get their sh*t together before getting new apps.
     
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  15. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    That's what I was referring to
     
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  16. Noelmel

    Noelmel Active Member

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    Gotcha well at least we know they’re working on it. Hopefully it won’t be too much longer


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  17. sharkster

    sharkster Well-Known Member TCF Club

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    Perhaps I'm misunderstanding, but it sounds like only if you have AT&t Cable you will no longer be able to stream HBO Go, or is HBO Go going away altogether?

    I have it on my Tivo and Roku with my cable through Charter/Spectrum.
     
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  18. Tony_T

    Tony_T Well-Known Member

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    The HBO Go app is going away July 31st
    There will be 2 apps: HBO Max and HBO.
    You can verify that you’re getting HBO Max (free) included with your cable subscription by downloading the app on your phone/iPad, etc.
    Roku has not yet struck a deal with HBO, so no Max app. If they don’t reach a deal (its expected they will), then an HBO app will replace the HBO Go app (and my understanding is that it will have the same content as the Go app). I don’t expected that HBO will have Max for TiVo bolt (though it is on the TiVo streamer, I think), and best hope is for the new HBO app to replace the TiVo Bolt HBO Go app, though possible that that won’t even happen.
     
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  19. sharkster

    sharkster Well-Known Member TCF Club

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    Thank You, Tony, as usual for great info. I thought HBO Max was a pay service, even if you have HBO, so that's good I guess. I hope it ends up carrying all the HBO stuff that Go had. But I'd rather use it on my TVs. I don't do TV on my phone or even my laptops.
     
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