HBO is changing the names of its apps again — here’s what you need to know

(L-R) TNT, TBS, truTV, HBO & HBO Max Content Acquisition EVP Michael Quigley, HBO Max CCO and TNT, TBS, & truTV President Kevin Reilly and HBO Max Head of Original Content Sarah Aubrey appear onstage during the HBO Max executive session segment of the 2020 Winter Television Critics Association Press Tour at The Langham Huntington, Pasadena on January 15, 2020 in Pasadena, California.

Emma McIntyre

HBO announced a major reorganization of its three streaming apps on Friday.

Some analysts have said that confusion over the company’s app branding have contributed to a bumpy start for HBO Max, AT&T’s latest entry into the streaming market, which is facing strong competition from a slew of competitors including Disney+. So, now it’s trying to clear that up.

HBO currently has three different apps:

  • HBO Go for people who pay for it through their cable subscriber.
  • HBO Now for $15 per month for people who don’t pay for it through their cable provider.
  • HBO Max, which was released earlier this year and also costs $15 per month (if you don’t get it already through your cable provider.)

By the end of August, there will be two HBO apps:

  • HBO, which has all of HBO’s videos.
  • HBO Max, which has everything from the HBO app plus part of the Warner Bros. catalog. 

The idea is that most HBO subscribers should be using HBO Max unless the platform they pay through hasn’t struck a deal to offer it yet. In that case, they’ll use a new app named HBO, which is a revised version of HBO Now.

Here’s what’s changing:

  • HBO will start removing HBO Go from platforms this summer starting on July 31. The vast majority of people who previously used HBO Go through their cable provider now have access to HBO Max, which has additional movies and TV shows, according to a spokesperson.
  • HBO Now will be renamed HBO. Most HBO Now subscribers got HBO Max for free earlier this year, except for users who paid through a third-party service like Roku and Fire TV, where the HBO Now app still exists. Those subscribers will see the app as HBO instead of HBO Now.

HBO hasn’t disclosed HBO Max subscriber numbers and won’t until AT&T’s earnings announcement next month, a representative said. 

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