Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Why HBO Go Can't Become A Standalone Streaming Service

You may love watching Game of Throne or Girls or any number of movies and specials on HBO.  But unless you buy the premium channel from a cable subscriber you can't get access to its streaming sidekick, HBO Go.  True, "People are sick of paying for cable they never use and want to stream everything on their smartphone and laptop instead."  But at the end of the day, it would not be likely to offer the service without the risk of losing cable fees.  Sure HBO shares its license fees with cable operators.  Once HBO offered a streaming service without a TV subscription, cable operators would seek to drop the channel ASAP.

Take it a step further, HBO is owned by Time Warner which also offers basic cable nets like TBS, TNT, and Tru.  Cable operators might take a vindictive approach, like Dish is now doing to AMC Networks, and move them to a hard to find position, or worse, drop these channels as well from the line-up.  For HBO and their parent company Time Warner, there is far more risk in upsetting the current apple cart for an unproven revenue stream. So wish all you might for HBO Go as a standalone offer, the risk of cord cutting is too great for Time Warner to make a move at this time.

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