Meeting its self-imposed “by Saturday” deadline, Sling TV said Thursday that it has added HBO to its lineup, offering the premium offering for $15 per month when bundled with the provider’s core TV package, which runs $20 per month.
Though Sling TV generally is a single-stream product, its HBO subs notably will have access to three streams of HBO content at no extra cost. That’s in addition to the single-stream dedicated to Sling TV’s core and $5 per month add-on packages (Hollywood Extra, Lifestyle Extra, World News Extra, Sports Extra, and Kids Extra). Multi-stream functionality for HBO, which will likely encourage a degree of password sharing, will be added to customer accounts on a rolling basis starting today.
Thursday’s launch also ensures that Sling TV subs can get HBO ahead of the April 12 season five premiere of Game of Thrones. Sling TV subs can add HBO by logging into their accounts.
Sling TV’s HBO offering will include a live stream of HBO plus access to the programmer’s VOD library. HBO Now, the new $14.99 stand-alone, unbundled OTT product offered initially via Apple and Cablevision Systems Optimum Online, does not carry a live linear feed of HBO.
Sling TV also said HBO is available across its platforms, which currently include Web browsers, the Amazon Fire TV box and Fire TV Stick, current-generation Roku players and Roku-powered smart TVs, the Xbox One, and Android and iOS mobile devices.
“We continue to give TV lovers the content they want on the devices they already own,” said Roger Lynch, CEO of Sling TV, in a statement. “We know Sling TV is the only way most of our customers can watch HBO shows like ‘Game of Thrones’ live. Adding HBO’s live and extensive on-demand content to our lineup highlights our continued commitment to bringing customers the very best programming.”
Earlier this week, Sling TV said it would launch HBO alongside an upgrade that will help it reduce the load on its servers and help it handle spikes in streaming demand, such as the one expected on Sunday night.
Other new enhancements include parental controls and the debut of a “mini guide” to help viewers find shows by subject and genre on the Fire TV, Roku and Xbox One platforms.