AT&T to launch premium WarnerMedia streaming service 'centered on HBO' in an apparent jab at Disney+
After NBC, Apple, and Disney, AT&T is gearing up to step into the world of streaming services. The company is set to launch its own WarnerMedia centric streaming service that will include HBO in its programming, according to CEO Randall Stephenson. During an AT&T earnings call, Stephenson said that the service is set to launch around September later this year.
"We’re going to give you a detailed look at the product, and that includes the breadth of new and existing content, so just stay tuned for that. We’re making significant investments here, and we think our customers are going to love this product,” Stephenson said. He also said that the service would be "centered on HBO and significantly enhanced by the Warner Bros. library, which is a very, very deep and prolific library."
.@GameOfThrones season eight premiere watched by record 17.4 million viewers: https://t.co/0NYMwkPOz9 pic.twitter.com/U2GAAyiV9I— HBO PR (@HBOPR) April 15, 2019
He also went on to talk about Disney's venture. "I was impressed by what Disney did," he said. As for seeing as a competitor, he said, "You’ll be able to formulate your own opinion in September or October about what we’ll be bringing to bear. In terms of premium content, think about the HBO brand. In terms of breadth of content, consider the Warner Bros. library and the depth of that library — the new original content creation machine at Warner Bros., which is really a impressive, scaled machine in terms of producing theatrical as well as TV productions. We’re actually quite optimistic. The Disney announcement gave us nothing but more optimism about what we’ll be able to bring to market," he said.
AT&T is still working on the prices for the service. As for HBO, it already has a streaming platform called HBO Now, but Stephenson did not elaborate its fate.
With so many streaming platforms coming into play the market is definitely crowded but with Disney changing the game with a price as low as $6.99/per month for a basic subscription, the pressure to get people to buy their product is also immense. However, he was sure that his platform would grab eyeballs. "I think what it did was give the market an appreciation that this is a viable direct to a consumer product that will have good appeal for a broad number of customers, not just in the U.S. but around the world,” he said, "And so I thought it was very instructive from that standpoint."