It's been a long time coming, but HBO will finally be releasing their cable-free streaming service next month in the U.S., over two years after they had released similar standalone subscriptions in countries such as Norway.
The new premium service, HBO NOW, will be available early next month before the new season of Game of Thrones is released on April 12th. It will cost $14.99/month and will be available to stream from web browsers at HBONOW.com.
In addition to streaming from browsers, HBO also will launch exclusively on Apple products, including the Apple TV, iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch. Users will be able to subscribe to the monthly streaming service via an in-app purchase, and HBO is offering a free 30-day trial of HBO NOW for anyone who signs up through Apple in the month of April.
At an Apple event on Monday, March 9th, HBO CEO Richard Plepler said, "When you subscribe to HBO Now, you will have access to all our acclaimed original programming, past present and future, as well as our unmatched lineup of Hollywood blockbusters."
There is no word on when HBO NOW will be available on Android, Amazon, Roku, or other streaming devices, but it's not likely to be soon. If you don't have an Apple product, you can still register online and watch in any web browser.
In the Apple event, Apple CEO Tim Cook also unveiled a price drop for the Apple TV, from $99 to $69, which will help it compete against rivals like Amazon's Fire TV devices and Roku.
If you subscribe to a costly cable subscription solely to watch new and old HBO shows like Game of Thones, True Detective, The Sopranos, Girls, and The Wire, then you finally have a reason to cut the cord. Hopefully other premium channels like Showtime will follow suit and offer a standalone premium service soon for non-cable subscribers.
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