No, Comcast Isn’t Offering Stand-Alone HBO Go… Yet
Fans of online streaming content were excited this week by reports that HBO’s online offering, HBO Go, would finally be unbundled in a new deal from Comcast. But it turns out now that the cable company and internet provider will still require users to pay for an HBO subscription through a set top box.
The “Internet Plus” trial offering reportedly provides HBO without a basic cable package (just a basic broadcast TV package), in addition to digital video-on-demand, and high speed broadband internet. The move is seen more as a marketing campaign to expand the company’s broadband.
But it is targeted towards those whose viewing habits are moving away from live TV. The HBO Go, internet, and VOD all cater to viewers who are used to being in control of when and where they watch programming.
HBO has increasingly warmed to the idea of an online-only offering, but has still not wanted to undercut the cable companies that provide the network with hefty fees. Fans have regularly clamored for a way to purchase HBO’s original programming a la carte; it’s believed that HBO’s subscription-only model is a reason that their show Game of Thrones is the most illegally downloaded show on the internet.
HBO did recently make much of its programming, including Game of Thrones, available for a la carte purchasing and downloading through the Google Play store.
What do you think- should HBO Go be available by itself?