During the first week of June, HBO Max will roll out an ad-supported subscription tier in the United States, according to a WarnerMedia press release. When the streamer initially launched in the last week of May 2020, it boasted a uniform price point of $14.99 a month. Per statements made during the WarnerMedia Upfront presentation, the newly announced HBO Max with Ads will offer access to the streamer’s content library for $9.99 a month. HBO Max’s much-publicized first-run film releases, however, are off-limits to subscribers who select the ad-supported experience, The Verge reports.
HBO Max with Ads was publicly introduced in an official AT&T press release from March 2021 detailing all major announcements made during the company’s Analyst & Investor Day presentation. The concept had reportedly been in the works since autumn 2020, when the streamer floated the idea of incorporating two to four minutes of commercials into each viewing hour for HBO Max original programming via a marketing survey, as reported by Variety.
For the advertisers themselves, HBO Max is allegedly offering several options for inclusion, via the press release. A standard brand-owned content block is currently on offer, and soon to come are models that link advertisements to pause button activity and even curate content displays based on brand objectives, according to the media room dispatch.
In addition to featuring advertisements on HBO Max, multiple properties introduced as platform-exclusive content can be expected to appear on some of WarnerMedia’s linear television channels, The Verge reports. New additions to the 2021 TBS schedule include animated sitcom Close Enough, critically acclaimed mystery thriller The Flight Attendant and romantic comedy programs Love Life and 12 Dates of Christmas, via a network press release. TNT, meanwhile, is set to receive season one of the teen superhero drama Titans, which originated on now-defunct streamer DC Universe, and the documentary Class Action Park, narrated by John Hodgman (Married, Jon Glaser Loves Gear), according to the press release.
The HBO brand has long bypassed television’s standard commercial protocols by virtue of its premium pay business model. Company founder Chuck Dolan’s intention with his Home Box Office (originally named The Green Channel) was to offer it as an exclusive incentive to prospective cable subscribers, according to Bill Mesce’s essay series It’s Not TV: HBO, The Company That Changed Television. With a revenue stream derived primarily from its subscription-based model, HBO could avoid commercial considerations and therefore present itself as an alternative to network broadcasters and their corporate partnerships.
Beyond discovering a new way to experience HBO Max offerings, subscribers have much to anticipate with regard to the streamer’s June additions. The BBC Three comedy series Starstruck is planning its U.S. debut, season two of the skater girl comedy Betty premieres on June 11, and season four of the animated children’s show Summer Camp Island arrives starting on June 17, as reported by Coming Soon. See for yourself what the streamer has in store for June by viewing the promotional clip below: