It looks like things are moving slowly but inevitably towards the point where HBO’s streaming service HBO Go will be offered directly to customers with broadband access, cutting out the middle man in the form of cable TV providers.
Jeff Bewkes, CEO of Time Warner, HBO’s parent company, has made the strongest comment to date that indicates they are seriously considering the move, Quartz reports. Before anyone jumps with joy, it has to be said that no commitment has been made yet, and the statement is still relatively hedged.
What we’ve basically been doing, we’re looking at the market. We’ve been looking at our ability to service customers and our distributors /…/ So now the broadband opportunity is getting quite a bit bigger, and the ability of the plant to deliver something robust is getting stronger/…/We’re seriously considering what is the best way to deal with online distribution, but I don’t have anything to announce about it today.
Given the Guiness World Record rates of piracy Game of Thrones is reaching as we reported, and the rising popularity of HBO Go and streaming services in general, the move would be far from surprising at this day and age. (Offering reliable, convenient, and affordable alternatives is the only real way to deal with piracy, in my opinion.) There has definitely been a lot of clamouring for such a possibility, but existing deals with cable providers and HBO having to rely on those for the distribution of their programmes are, understandably, slowing down the process.