During today’s AT&T Q4 2019 Earnings Call, COO John Stankey covered the 2020 objectives for AT&T, one of which is the launch of HBO Max. He says the company is excited about the launch of the service, which is still on track for May 2020.
AT&T, commenting about the company’s overall financials for the quarter, noted that HBO Max will be a huge investment, but they’re ready for the financial losses as they look forward to meeting long term goals. Those revenue losses, which totaled $1.2 billion, are largely due to the revenue that AT&T would have seen had they chosen to sell content licenses to other services. Instead, AT&T is holding on to those licenses to make major series, including Friends and The Big Bang Theory, exclusive to HBO Max.
Earlier this month, AT&T had had their Citi 2020 Global TMT West Conference Call. During that call, we first learned that the company is planning to offer HBO Max in bundle plans. CFO John Stephens compared these bundles to the Verizon and Disney+ deal, noting that AT&T has the advantage as the owner of both the wireless and streaming services in their deal.
“We’ve got this HBO Max quality product and AT&T TV quality product to bundle with our wireless.” Said John Stephens during the Citi 2020 Global TMT West Conference Call.
Today, Stankey again confirmed that AT&T Unlimited customers will get HBO Max for free. 10 million current HBO subscribers will also have immediate access to HBO Max at launch, giving the new service a huge subscriber base right off the bat.
Stankey went on to call HBO Max a game changer, saying he believes HBO Max will be the “highest quality SVOD on the market” that includes “high quality, culturally relevant content.” The service will have twice the programming of the current HBO service, including exclusive and original content.
While the team is currently working on features of the app, including user navigation and screen layout, according to Stankey, it was once again reiterated that the streaming service is on track to launch in May this year.
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