Explaining why Warner Bros. Discovery dropped the HBO branding for its revamped streaming service, now called Max

Apr 12, 2023, 5:40 PM UTC
2 mins read
Explaining why Warner Bros. Discovery dropped the HBO branding for its revamped streaming service, now called Max
(Image Credit: Warner Bros. Discovery)

Warner Bros. Discovery has announced that its revamped subscription service will now be called “Max,” dropping the HBO branding in a move aimed at broadening the app’s appeal beyond adult content. Speaking at a press event, JB Perrette, the CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery’s global streaming and games division, said that the company wanted “Max” to be easily recognizable and welcoming to all, including kids and families.

While HBO has been a groundbreaking trendsetter in entertainment for adults for over five decades, Perrette noted that it might not be the most attractive brand for parents looking to drop off their kids. However, HBO will still feature in the app, and it will be given privileged treatment in the product experience.

Max is set to launch on May 23rd, and the move to the new app will not affect the pricing of existing HBO Max subscriptions. User profiles, settings, watch history, ‘Continue Watching,’ and ‘My List’ items will also be transferred to the new experience, according to a press release from Warner Bros. Discovery.

By removing the HBO branding, Warner Bros. Discovery sees an opportunity to better showcase its kids-focused brands, such as Cartoon Network, Boomerang, the Wizarding World, and Looney Tunes, within the app. This move comes as part of the company’s efforts to differentiate itself in the crowded streaming market and appeal to a broader audience.

As more and more families cut the cord and move away from traditional cable TV, streaming services have become a significant part of the entertainment landscape. Warner Bros. Discovery’s move to broaden its app’s appeal to families and kids could help it gain an edge in this highly competitive market.

However, the decision to remove the HBO branding has not been without criticism. HBO is a well-known and respected brand in the entertainment industry, and some fans may be hesitant to move to a service that doesn’t carry the same name recognition.

Despite this, Warner Bros. Discovery remains confident that Max will be a success. The company is banking on the app’s ability to cater to a broader audience, including families and kids, and to showcase its portfolio of beloved brands to a wider audience. With Max set to launch in just a few weeks, it won’t be long before we see if this bold move pays off.

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