A HBO anunciou que vai lançar um serviço de streaming pela Internet no Brasil e na Argentina até o fim do ano. Atualmente o HBO Go só pode ser acessado por assinantes da emissora na TV a cabo.
Em um comunicado oficial, a empresa afirmou que o serviço poderá ser contratado "por meio das operadoras participantes, que serão anunciadas no momento do lançamento". O preço deve ser similar ao do pacote dos canais HBO e MAX na TV a cabo.
HBO to Launch Stand-Alone Streaming Services in Brazil and Argentina This Year
HBO announced today it would be expanding its streaming footprint with the launch of standalone streaming services in Brazil and Argentina, which are set to go by year’s end. These join the recently announced standalone service arriving in Spain, also before year’s end, as well as the network’s streaming services that are live now in nine countries worldwide (U.S., Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Colombia, Mexico, Hong Kong, Singapore).
News of the South American expansion was unveiled today at Morgan Stanley’s Tech, Media and Telecom Conference, where CEO Richard Plepler detailed the network’s various efforts with its over-the-top services, and responded to questions about the performance of HBO NOW in the U.S.
The company, as you may recall, was criticized earlier this year for having grown HBO NOW to “only” 800,000 subscribers.
Plepler again reiterated that HBO is investing in content that will appeal to the streaming demographic, including programs from Jon Stewart and Bill Simmons. He also pointed to the network’s deal with Vice, which will provide a nightly newscast to HBO NOW viewers. When these shows launch later this year, HBO will increase its marketing push for HBO NOW, the CEO said.
“When that comes on this summer and into the year we will start marketing accordingly, using a lot of that content to attack what we think is a real opportunity in the digital space,” said Plepler, as reported by Variety. “We have not turbo-charged the direct marketing as much as we will in the coming months.”
Plepler also confirmed that HBO will remain under the Time Warner umbrella instead of being spun out, and announced that HBO and Summit Entertainment extended their exclusive output agreement through the end of 2022. He emphasized the importance of this agreement and of theatricals to HBO, adding that Summit films like “Divergent” and “John Wick” were top performers on the streaming service.
The company also has licensing deals with Universal, Fox and Warner Bros. And though, like Netflix, HBO heavily invests in original programming, movies are still a big draw for HBO subscribers.
“Movies represent over 75 percent of viewing on HBO, 71 percent across all platforms, 62 percent of on demand usage, and 40 percent of our subscribers only watch movies,” said Plepler.
The announcement of HBO’s streaming service expansions comes shortly after rival Netflix’s game-changing move to make its service available across the globe. The company had announced at CES in January that it was going live in 130 new countries worldwide, including India. That immediately made Netflix more of threat to newcomers like HBO NOW, whose pricier service is still largely dependent on top titles like “Game of Thrones” to attract an audience.
However, HBO has been working to revamp its image a bit in recent weeks, as it expands its catalog to better compete with Netflix, Hulu, Amazon and others.
In addition to soon bringing in more millennial-friendly programming options and those aimed at cord cutters, it also targeted a more mainstream audience by launching a new children’s section this year. This section now includes Sesame Street and other titles from Sesame Workshop, and was introduced alongside features for parents like a “Kids Lock” setting and other parental controls.
HBO will launch stand-alone over-the-top services in Brazil and Argentina
The premium channel has also extended an agreement with Summit Entertainment, which will provide its films through 2022.
HBO will launch stand-alone over-the-top services in Brazil and Argentina this year, the premium channel's chairman and CEO Richard Plepler announced Wednesday at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference in San Francisco.
When the two South American countries are added, along with Spain, also coming shortly, it will have stand-alone streaming services in 12 territories, including the U.S., Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Colombia, Mexico, Hong Kong and Singapore.
HBO Now, which has about 800,000 subscribers in the U.S., is also headed for the PlayStation and Xbox platforms this year as the premium cable network tries to ramp up the digital service quickly, targeting the 12 million-15 million households that it has labeled "persuadable homes."
HBO Go, the digital service for subscribers to regular HBO, has seen usage soar 40 percent in a year, Plepler told the Wall Street analysts in attendance Wednesday. He also noted that HBO's digital services are not cannibalistic, since less than 1 percent of HBO's traditional subscribers have ditched TV for them.
Plepler also announced that HBO has extended an agreement for movies provided by Lionsgate's Summit Entertainment through 2022, and noted that Hollywood films are an underappreciated aspect of HBO's business.
"I say this over and over again, and people sometimes look at me quizzically, but movies represent over 75 percent of viewing on HBO," he said. Summit's Divergent films and John Wick are top performers on HBO.
Plepler also said 62 percent of on-demand viewing on HBO is for Hollywood movies and 40 percent of its subscribers watch only movies — no TV shows — on HBO.
He noted HBO is growing subscribers while some competitors are faltering, and predicted a strong renewal cycle.
"Look, we help our distributors grow. They know that," said Plepler. "Whether they're doing it through skinny bundles, whether they're doing it through basic-plus packages, whether they're doing it through triple-play packages, we make the bundle stickier."
"There's gold in the hills for all of us. That's unequivocal," he said.