HBO Now for Android could come when Apple’s 3 month exclusivity period ends


hbo now screenshot

In case you weren’t watching yesterday’s Apple press conference, the company cut out a slot of time to talk about Apple TV. A pretty big announcement was made — HBO Now, a cord cutter’s dream. It brings all of the big studio’s best content without having to be tied to cable service.

This is the first major cable television channel that is offering its full, up-to-date library of content without having to get it through a cable provider’s subscription. It’s $14.99 per month — a bit on the pricy side, but the typical $7.99 packages available through cable are likely to be subsidized by whatever deals the two sides have in place — and it’ll give you on-demand access to HBO’s award-winning television shows new and old, as well as whatever movies are currently in the company’s rotations.

Sounds great, yeah? There’s just one problem: it’s tied to a very exclusive group of folks to start. Apple is HBO’s exclusive launch partner for HBO Now, so if you don’t have an iOS device or an Apple TV then you won’t be able to play ball just yet.

The period of exclusivity lasts 3 months, according to Engadget. An expiration date on the deal means there’s a high chance HBO will eventually make it available for anyone and everyone willing to throw $15 per month their way. We’d hope that would eventually mean we’ll see its arrival on Android.

Surprise Google I/O announcement for Android TV and Chromecast users? We’d hope so, and the event does conveniently take place just before that 3-month window expires. But no matter the venue or date an announcement is made, we’re hoping HBO and Apple won’t decide to continue to play keep away once the deal expires and let those of us who decide to use other platforms in on the fun (because decent human beings shouldn’t let other decent human beings go without season 5 of Game of Thrones).

[via iSource]

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. If they do keep it exclusive longer than that, I’ll quickly lose interest in it. Easiest way to leave money on the table is to irritate people who want to pay for content.

  2. it’s convenient for Apple that the exclusivity period covers the span of Game of Thrones. Probably the main thing people would get the service for. I guess GOT will be the most pirated show still lol.

    1. Exactly. HBO must have gotten rich from that deal

      1. What do you care? You don’t pay.

        1. What do you care? You don’t have the service yet.

    2. I wonder how many $69 Apple TVs will be sold just so people can stream GoT.

      1. Idk. On one hand there’s so many streaming boxes out there and I think most people already have one. However on the other hand people need their GoT fix and $69 can’t be more expensive than a cable/satellite subscription with HBO.

    3. With HBO Go you can watch the content ANY time. Even OLD content. So, you still get it. Even better, you will be able to get all of the GOT in 1 shot and binge watch. No reason to pirate.

      1. Well I don’t pirate it personally. I have Comcast but with how good the show is I doubt people would be willing to wait for three months. Even if people could then binge watch.

      2. People aren’t going to wait for it. One of the things people enjoy about massively watched shows like this is talk to it with their friends/coworkers the day after it airs. It will still be heavily pirated and HBO will have themselves to blame for the most part. That’s a lot of potential subscribers they lost on this exclusivity deal. People will eventually subscribe but for some it may be next year before the next season of GOT(If its not delayed by the books not being finished yet).

  3. $15? Damn that’s pretty expensive still… On top of that, Android users gotta wait 3 months, which won’t be in time for Game of Thrones? Yeaa… Sticking to torrents.

    1. Beotching about price and admits stealing content…. nice man.

      1. I’m willing to pay, but not at this price, or after the 3 month wait. Rarely do I torrent, unless I can’t get something not available to me.

        Keep your high horse in check

        1. “Rarely do I torrent”.. bwa ha ha yeah rarely do I steal. Stealing is stealing. 1 time a month or 30, it’s the same. You are not less lame because you do it “rarely”.

          I am not on a high horse, but with something like this, I should be as you just straight up admit you steal crap off the web since (1) you are too cheap to pay and (2) it is not coming quick enough for you. And then you still complain about a price you don’t even pay. Nice.

          1. Can I have your HBO Go account?

            Refusing to $15 per month for HBO is not being cheap, especially since I only like a handful of shows from them. Why should I have to pay for something before complaining about it?

            And then you still like playing on your horse and pointing fingers. Nice.

          2. Can you have my HBO account? No. But so far, near every post of yours shows your mentality of taking something you want for free if you cannot get it or think it is to pricey. You no like the price, cool. But then don’t go steal it anyway.

            When I don’t stel web content, and you do, it is easy to point fingers at you. And you deserve it.

          3. Idk if its your wording or not, but I’m sensing salt from you. I’m willing to bet I’m not alone in my belief toward HBO Now, but please, enjoy your subscription.

          4. I do enjoy it. And I pay for it. And you seem to like it also, you just opt to steal the content versus paying for it. Idk if its your wording or not, but I’m sensing you feel entitled since you don’t like the rules you sidestep them.

          5. Glad to hear you enjoy it! Now move on

          6. Every Point you have made is spot on!! I really want an Xbone but don’t like the price so I think i’ll just take one off the shelf, seems like the done thing around here.

          7. Oh dear. Stealing is stealing but there’s degrees of severity and impact. That’s why in this country (and the UK) you don’t usually get a death sentence for stealing a candy bar.

          8. you’re like the most sensible person on here, seriously

          9. Easy man, the guy’s got valid complaints. When you got Netflix charging under $10 for a massive, massive catalog of tv series and films and HBO chargers more for content that doesn’t come close to matching what Netflix offers it’s reasonable to question their pricing.

          10. But you cannot then go steal Netflix content because you are pissed. Being pissed about price or content is 1 thing, then going out and taking it anyway is wholly different.

            Oh, and BTW, HBO offers content WAY better than anything on Netflix. GOT, Netflix has nothing like that. Not that quality, that scope, that production, that cast, that grandiose. And, their catalog, actually not very current or deep in selection.

          11. The size of their inventory was what I was pointing to. The level of quality and enjoyment of said content is VERY subjective.

          12. Subjective? To some degree, yes but the masses seem to agree when you look at the number of people complaining about the lack of selection and dropping their Netflix accounts.

            Just like you saying $10 for Netflix versus $15 for HBO is subjective as they do not offer the same exact thing, so you are simply pointing out a $5 difference, but subjectively, that $5 gets you way more content, way more current content (I can watch episode of Vice the same day the episode is released), and way more grandiose production quality made for HBO content.

            Either way.. StrikkerXX is not just complaining about the price and moving on. He is complaining AND then stealing it anyway.

          13. Yeap.. definitely salt

          14. Yeap.. definitely a thief and entitled.

          15. Na, I was pointing out the amount of content. Not its quality. And it’s extremely subjective.

          16. As is the price difference. You say he has a point why pat $15 when I can pay $10 you are essentially saying I get the same for $10 so why would I pay $15 and I am saying.. subjective or not… you are not getting the same.

            And no matter what… PAY for it, don’t steal it.

          17. To some it would be the same, to others it wouldn’t. Subjective.

          18. But YOU raised the line of thought by saying “the guy’s got valid complaints” and then undo your claim by saying “it’s all subjective”. Want your cake and eat it too much?

          19. Guy’s still got valid opinions. He feels their price is not fair (subjective) you feel it is (subjective). And we go on our merry way.

            Ooooh I can go for some carrot cake right now. DAMN I could murder some carrot cake right now!

          20. The one thing you seem to just sidestep and not even address is.. he then goes and steals it anyway. Not sure why this is hard for you to see & even acknowledge. So he does not go on his merry way, he gets angry about the price and goes and takes it anyway. Big disconnect in where you opt to stop your line of thinking.

          21. I’m not side stepping it. I just don’t have an opinion on his pirating. Seriously, you got me craving cake now.

          22. Right, which is why you revert to jokes – it’s what people do when they get uncomfortable, need to deflect their poor logic and their position is crumbling under them, so go enjoy your cake.

          23. Na, I’m just trying to have a bit of fun because I don’t fret over internet comments from folks who clearly have some issues to deal with.

            Uncomfortable about discussing something like piracy? Oh you! Wearing my kevlar in Afghanistan was uncomfortable.

            Bless your heart.


          24. I heard there was this little series on Netflix that was pretty good. House of Cards I believe is the name of it… I think it even won a few Emmys…

          25. Doesn’t matter right now anyways since I can’t get HBO Now until the 3 month exclusive deal is up since I don’t have any apple products. For that reason alone, I plan to torrent it since the only alternative would be re subscribing to cable which I’m not doing. They want me to pay, then offer me an opportunity without apple or cable. Until then I will steal it and I have no issue with that.

          26. Content is hugely subjective. There are plenty of people who like House of Cards more than GOT. I like both myself. They are both great shows for their own unique reasons. Also, Netflix has a much larger inventory with many different style of shows. To each their own. Also, if netflix was trying to make people use a particular service to watch their shows, I’m sure they would be pirated too. But they don’t. They make sure you can use their service on pretty much any platform or device available.

          27. Yeah, my only complaint on the netflix front is the delay of release of shows until end of season…but that can be circumvented with magically transporting one’s self to another “region” so again I find a work-around. They can continue to have my 8 bucks a month though.

          28. I’ve been known to download an “exclusive to Itunes” release temporarily on an illegal basis and when it’s on Amazon MP3 or another format that I don’t despise, then I buy it legit then. Exclusivity is just plain stupid. TV providers have gotten away with it for a long time thinking they “know what’s best” for people by leveraging their “buying power” to keep the price per commodity item (channel) at a lower rate. What isn’t factored in is the fact that their getting in bed with the channel/studios whatever in any case is leveraging buying power for a crapload of channels NO ONE CARES ABOUT! It’s also what makes for those FANTASTIC disputes about pricing where you get sidelined while they fight over who’s going to win the gouge fest. If they don’t want my money today, I have no problem acquiring something as needed until they decide to stop taking their ball and going home and play nice instead. I don’t lose sleep over not bending over for some greedy a**hats. It’s not a fair or open market in any way by definition. I should be deputized to buy what I want, not painted into a corner.

        2. This is actually a good price. I just checked and my cable company charges the same $15 a month just for the live HBO stations, HBO On Demand is another $5 a month. Considering I probably won’t be able to watch GOT live, On Demand is essential for me. Plus, knowing my cable company, it would probably be easier to cancel this than my cable company (yes I will be one of those who just gets HBO for GOT 5, had it before and never watched anything else.)

          So for $45, I will watch on my wife’s iPad.

    2. You can get the actual HBO stations with HBO On Demand and HBO Go included from cable/satellite for $15 (sometimes less). I don’t know why anyone would pay $15 just for streaming. HBO Now should be $5 at most. Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu Plus have far more content than HBO for under $10 / month, so HBO Now needs to be less than them to be sane.

      1. This is for people without cable.

        1. Yes, of course it is. The point is you’re paying more for less with HBO Now. HBO Now should be no more than $5.

      2. Because regular cable, no matter the price, is redundant for those who prefer “on demand” services.

        1. You miss the point. You shouldn’t have to pay more for less. And who offers On Demand without cable?

      3. Because “cord cutters” are under the impression that paying 10 different providers separate fees to use 10 separate apps to watch TV than to pay the company they are already paying for internet to provide the content all together with a full built in guide that shows everything available.

        1. I couldn’t have said it better. :)

    3. $15 is about what you’d pay to add HBO to your cable bill. It’s right in line with current pricing.

  4. I’ve been using a friend’s HBO Go login to watch HBO, and I was happy to go legit and pay for HBO Now. But this Apple exclusivity will keep me from giving HBO my money for the next season of GoT because I can’t watch it as they are released on any of my 6 Android devices unless I continue to use my friend’s HBO Go account.

  5. Can’t you just use the hbo now website and chromecast it from there? Assuming you have an iOS device to initially subscribe

    1. But how many of us here would own an iOS device tho? I am betting not many. I certainly do not

  6. Can’t you just use the hbo now website and chromecast it from there? Assuming you have an iOS device to initially subscribe.

  7. Can’t you just use the hbo now website and chromecast it from there? Assuming you have an iOS device to initially subscribe

    1. HBO Go requires a cable subscription.

    2. If the iOS HBO now app has Chromecast support just like the iOS HBO go app then yes you could stream to Chromecast from an iPhone or iPad.

  8. Woah multi post. Sorry.

  9. Exclusive deals lead to piracy.

    1. People lead to piracy. No one forces people to steal. They just steal. It’s an entitled world anymore.

      1. No, it’s an inter-connected world, global world, where people believe in the right to equal access to products and services, and are willing to pay money.

        Restricting supply, when there is high demand will lead to piracy.

  10. Will this effect hbo go

      1. ? thank you sweety, good looking out

  11. I’m surprised that they could only get 3 months. They must have we’ll block your app if you don’t give us any exclusive time.

  12. I was personally only able to watch the first half of the first season before I got to bored with the show

  13. Is there even a difference between this and HBO Go? Other than the fact Go means you have a cable subscription as well? Does one offer a few more shows/movies than the other? Hmmm.

    1. The same, but Now is for people who don’t have the cable subscription.

  14. Shiver me timbers me hearties! Looks like 3 more months free!

    1. What ever arrrrrre you referring to? Your comment certainly swashed my buckle though good sir.

  15. Exclusivity in the gaming world is as much of a console seller as it is a huge frustration. I’m curious to see how this translates to the mobile phone industry. My bet is that HBO Now doesn’t necessarily drive phone sales only because HBO is so incredibly ubiquitous, or at least their popular shows are. It would have been a bigger deal if they pulled a T-mobile/MLB scenario and offered HBO Now for free for 3 months when you buy a phone. I assure you that when exclusivity ends, HBO will reap huge gains with the Android Chromecasting market share leading public as a whole.

  16. Ahh, but will it Comcast?

    1. I certainly don’t.

  17. I get HBO Showtime and Cinemax via Charter Cable for $20. This is a ripoff……. but I am sure apple fanboys will eat it up!

    1. Yeah, but you’re still paying for the cable on top of that, no? You pay for it one way or another.

  18. God bless Showbox.

  19. thank god for parents cable subscription so I dont have to pay for HBO Go. Not sure how this would be better.

  20. Let’s not give them too much credit. The Android app may just not be ready. These are the same guys who can’t seem to get the MaxGO app working for tablets, despite the HBOGo app having a tablet version.

  21. It’s for the best. I’m sure they wouldn’t want to flood their servers with too much traffic by choosing devices that would actually be a majority market share. They probably have some gift card prize for driving revenue in Q2 or Q3 when they normally see a slump. It definitely makes sense.


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