HBO Now, HBO’s new over-the-top stand-alone service, became available Tuesday (April 7) and is initially being offered directly through Apple or Cablevision Systems's broadband service starting at $14.99 per month.
Customers who sign up for HBO Now in April will receive a 30-day free trial of the service, which is booting up ahead of this Sunday’s season five premiere of Game of Thrones. The on-demand offering (HBO Now is not launching with the linear live stream of HBO), does provide subs with access to movies such as Divergent and X-Men: Days of Future Past, and every season of HBO’s original content and series, including True Detective, Silicon Valley, as well as Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. Speaking of Oliver, HBO has posted a video of his humorous take on the debut of HBO Now.
Like HBO Go, the programmer's authenticated TV Everywhere service for MVPDs, HBO Now will offer more than 2,000 titles online.
HBO reiterated that it is in talks with its existing MVPD partners and new digital players to offer HBO Now. HBO has noted that the price of HBO Now could vary by distribution partner.
Apple customers can subscribe to the service by downloading the HBO Now app to their iOS device or directly on Apple TV using their iTunes accounts. Once signed up, they can view HBO programming on those devices as well as on browsers via HBONow.com.
Cablevision Optimum Online subs can sign up via the Web, or call 866-262-9329. Once signed up, those customers will also be able to watch HBO fare on iOS devices, the Apple TV or at HBONow.com; they’ll be required to select “Optimum” from the drop-down menu and sign in using their Optimum credentials.
Sling TV, Dish Network’s new OTT pay-TV service for cord-cutters, isn’t offering HBO Now, but is nearing the launch of the HBO service, including a live HBO stream, for $15 per month. Those customers will also need to take Sling TV’s core $20 per month video service package.