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HBO Max vs. HBO Go vs. HBO Now: Which to Choose in 2024?

HBO Max vs. HBO Go vs. HBO Now: Which to Choose in 2024?

    • Nowadays, People who love a good adult-oriented, original, and theatrical programming turn to HBO – a popular American pay-TV network and the oldest-running subscription television service in the US. There once was a time when HBO had three different streaming services: HBO Max, HBO Now, and HBO Go. Now, HBO Max is the  WarnerMedia's latest streaming platform, boasts a catalog of exclusive and original streaming content. But how is HBO Max different from the now-discontinued HBO Now and HBO Go? How are these streaming platforms different? How are they alike? What is the difference between HBO Go HBO Now and HBO Max? HBO vs. HBO Max: which one should you get? Next, we went ahead and laid it all out in the clearest way possible to help you access HBO in the best way for you.

 

Cover Photo:HBO's Facebook
 

HBO Max vs. HBO Go vs. HBO Now Overview

HBO Max

1646447061699260.png

Source:hbomax's facebook

What is HBO Max?

HBO Max is the company's latest foray into the world of streaming. The service, which launched in late 2020, combines all the things you love about the premium cable network, while also offering hundreds of shows from other channels – plus a fair amount of new, original content. HBO Max replaced the aging HBO GO app, although it retains much of the same functionality while expanding its catalog in exciting new directions.

With arguably one of the most enticing libraries on the streaming marketplace, it should come as no surprise that HBO Max isn't cheap. An ad-supported option is available for $10/mo., but that balloons to $15/mo. if you want everything it has to offer. The platform also doesn't offer a free trial. That means you'll want to be sure it's a good fit for your needs before signing up.

HBO Max Key Specs 

Starting Price$9.99 per month
Concurrent Streams3
Live TVNo
On-Demand Movies and TV ShowsYes
Original ProgrammingYes
AnimeYes
AdsNo
Offline Downloads on MobileYes

How Much Does HBO Max Cost?

HBO Max offers two tiers: one without ads for $14.99 per month and one with ads for $9.99 per month. Subscribers to the ad-supported tier cannot download content for offline viewing on mobile devices, stream 4K content, or watch any of the same-day Warner Bros. movie releases.

HBO Max, like Disney+ and Netflix, no longer offers a free trial, but you can save money by paying for a subscription on an annual basis. An annual subscription to the ad-free and ad-supported tiers cost $149.99 per year and $99.99 per year respectively.

HBO Max plans

PlanPriceHours of contentStreamsVideoDetails

HBO Max(Ad-Free) 

$14.99/month

$149.99/year

10,000
31080p, 4KView Plan
HBO Max(With Ads) 

$9.99/month

$99.99/year

1080p, 4K31080p, 4KView Plan

Reviews:

ProsCons
  • Huge catalog of popular shows and movies from many sources

  • Attractive apps

  • Ad-free tier lets subscribers download content for offline viewing

  • User profiles and parental control tools

  • Relatively expensive

  • Ad-supported tier doesn't support offline downloads

  • Limited number of 4K titles

Mobile Apps

We downloaded the HBO Max app on an Android 10 device and had no trouble logging into our account. The app matches the color scheme and design of the web interface. We didn’t encounter any performance issues or lag when browsing content or launching streams.

How to Get HBO Max Through Cable Company?

HBO Max comes with a traditional subscription to HBO, which you can add to a cable package through the following providers: AT&T TV, DIRECTV, U-Verse TV, Cox, Optimum, Spectrum, Verizon Fios TV, and others. Call up your cable provider for more information on how to sign up.

How to Watch HBO Max?

If you want to watch HBO Max shows on your phone or tablet, simply download the HBO Max app on your iOS or Android device, and you’ll be prompted to log into your account. If you don’t have one, you can sign up from inside the app itself.

The HBO Max app is available on Apple TV, Samsung TVs released after 2016, the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Roku and Fire TV devices. Once downloaded, open the app and you’ll be prompted to log into your account. If you don’t have one, you can sign up from inside the app itself.

 Is HBO Max worth it?

You get more content with HBO Max for the same price as HBO on cable—hello! Yes, $14.99 a month seems steep, but we think HBO Max earns its price tag (we’re not into HBO Max with ads at any price, though).

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HBO Go

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Source:hbogo's facebook

What is HBO GO?

HBO Go is the free streaming service that is included in the HBO cable subscription package, making it only available for those with an existing cable or satellite connection to HBO. It features similar content to that found on the HBO Now package, except the latter is a stand-alone service that doesn’t come with cable connection.

Subscribers to HBO Go get access to all of HBO’s original shows along with the latest movies and HBO specials. When first launched in 2010, the streaming service was only accessible through the HBO website using computers. The mobile apps for iOS and Android were subsequently made available in 2011, making it possible to watch from mobile phones and tablets.

HBO GO Discontinued

On June 12, 2020, WarnerMedia rolled out the announcement that it would pull back HBO GO and all its media player apps from the market, in the light of new HBO Max deals secured by most carriers. Those providers who are not yet on board with HBO Max distribution continue to offer HBO GO to their customers, but only through the HBO GO website. In other words, you can’t download the HBO GO app on your connected devices anymore, since it’s declared deprecated.

How Much Does HBO GO Cost?

Free Cost. One of the main attractions of HBO GO was that it came free of charge once you cleared your HBO subscription bill with a cable or satellite TV provider. You didn’t have to sign a contract or give the free trial a test run. 

Reviews:

ProsCons
  • Free to download & stream

  • Access to all of HBO’s movies and TV shows (duh).

  • compatible with most popular platforms and internet browsers

  • There’s no cap on the number of devices you can link to your account.

  • Simultaneous streaming lets up to three users watch on different devices at once 

  • You don’t have to explain Westworld to your mom until after you've watched it alone once already.


  • HBO Go can be a little complicated to set up.

  • HBO channel subscription required

Mobile Apps

Now HBO GO is replaced by HBO Max.

How to Get HBO GO?

First of all, if you don't have an HBO subscription, go to HBO.com/order to purchase one through a participating TV provider. Once you have a username and password for your TV provider account, you can sign in to HBO GO. When you're all set, go to HBOGO.com on your computer, and in the upper-right corner, choose Sign In. Alternatively, open the HBO GO app on your mobile device, and choose Sign In.Not applicable now)

How to Watch HBO GO?

To watch HBO Go, you need a compatible device. You can sign into your HBO Go account through your web browser on a computer, or you can sign into the HBO Go app, which is available for select compatible devices (listed below). You're allowed to use HBO Go on multiple different devices at the same time, but the number of simultaneous streams is limited. 

(Not applicable now)

 Is HBO GO Worth it?

Now HBO GO is replaced by HBO Max.HBO GO was free of charge for those who had an HBO subscription through a cable TV service provider.

HBO Now

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Source:hbo's facebook

What is HBO NOW?

HBO ruled TV for years — it was the premium alternative to average entertainment. Its standalone app HBO NOW thrives with much of the same original HBO sensibility, functioning like Netflix and delivering tons of popular content. HBO was years ahead of its streaming competitors in developing original series and movies. In addition to its vast well of premium original content, you’ll find documentaries and licensed movies that range from new releases to popular classics. 

There’s often a bit of confusion when it comes to HBO NOW and HBO’s other plan, HBO GO. So, let’s take a look at the main differences. HBO GO and its on-demand library come free with a subscription through your TV provider. HBO NOW, on the other hand, is a standalone service like Disney+. You can also purchase a subscription through your TV provider. According to HBO’s website, the length of HBO NOW’s trial period differs by provider. You’ll get a free seven-day trial if you sign up directly through the service.

HBO Now Key Specs 

Starting Price$14.99 per month
Concurrent Streams3
Live TVNo
On-Demand Movies and TV ShowsYes
Original ProgrammingYes
AnimeYes
AdsNo
Offline Downloads on MobileYes

How Much Does HBO Now Cost?

HBO Now offered a single plan for only $14.99 per month, which competed well with other streaming services, such as Netflix ($8.99 - $17.99 per month). It also gave you a chance to try out its seven-day trial period free of any charges. And HBO Now did not bind its users with any type of contract. You could cancel the subscription whenever you wanted.

HBO Now Plans

Monthly price$14.99
Free trial length7 days
Number of TV shows and films180+ shows and 900+ movies
Offline downloadsNo
Streaming quality1080p HD
Ad-freeYes

Reviews:

ProsCons
  • Unmatched library of top-notch original shows.

  • No ads.

  • Excellent interfaces and performance.

  • Expensive.

  • No HDR or 4K content.

  • No offline viewing.

  • Unclear how many concurrent streams allowed.

Mobile Apps

HBO Now supports an impressive number of platforms. In addition to the web, HBO Now is available on Android, iOS, and Fire OS devices. You can also use the service on the PS4, PS3, Xbox One, and Xbox 360. For smart TV users, HBO works on Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, Android TV, Apple TV, Google Chromecast, Roku, and compatible Samsung TVs. 

How to Get HBO Now?

If that HBO NOW free trial has got you excited, we've got you covered. Here's how to sign up for HBO NOW.

HBO NOW is HBO's direct subscription app, so you can sign up for the service right there in the app. If you've never been a customer before, you'll be signed up for a week-long free trial offer first. If you cancel at any time during the trial, you won't be charged. So hope on your mobile device or click this link to sign up for HBO NOW's free trial.

How to Watch HBO Now?

You can download the HBO NOW app on your mobile device. You can also get it on most streaming platforms and streaming devices, making it easy to watch HBO NOW on your big screen. And HBO NOW works in your browser, as well, so you can always just watch HBO NOW on your computer if that's what you'd prefer.

 Is HBO Now Worth it?

If you are willing to wait a few months, and watch less than 8 shows a year from HBO, then HBO Now is not worth it for you. It’s definitely not worth it if you are looking for just the movies, as many of them are free on Netflix or Amazon Prime.

Note:HBO Go and HBO Now have been discontinued. HBO Max replaced HBO Go. HBO Now is now called HBO. HBO Max offers all the same content as the HBO app, plus a massive library of content from other Warner Media properties. 

How to Get HBO Max?

HBO Max is available in the US and in some US territories, as well as several countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. But how do you subscribe to the service if you want the expanded catalog on offer?

Existing HBO Subscribers

If you are an HBO subscriber you most likely have access to HBO Max at no extra charge—you just need to activate the service. Here's how:

  • Install the HBO Max app on a supported device.

  • Sign in by choosing Sign in with a Provider.

  • Choose your provider and enter your account credentials for that provider.

New HBO Subscribers

If you don't already subscribe to HBO through one of its older services or a third party, you can get HBO Max by signing up on the HBO Max website. This is the most direct way to access the service. You can also sign up via the HBO Max app on Android, iOS, or Samsung smart TVs.

Other providers who offer HBO Max access include:

  • Hulu

  • Prime Video Channels

  • YouTube TV

Alternatively, you can sign up for HBO Max via your cable provider.

HBO Max is also available through certain internet providers, including:

  • Consolidated Communications

  • Liberty

  • North State

  • Optimum

  • Service Electric Cablevision

  • Verizon Fios

  • Ziply Fiber

Tips:You will have to check which packages and plans include HBO Max access as part of their bundled services.

HBO Max vs. HBO Go vs. HBO Now: Comparison Side by Side

1.Price

  • HBO Max ($14.99 per month): The new stand-alone streaming service from WarnerMedia includes everything on HBO Now, plus additional movies and TV from partners like BBC Studios, The Criterion Collection, and Warner Bros.

  • HBO Go: This is the bundled streaming service that allows cable subscribers to access HBO content on their various digital devices.

  • HBO Now ($14.99 per month): This is the older stand-alone streaming service, featuring HBO content, but none from any of its partners. Some HBO Now subscribers will get free access to HBO Max when the new service launches on May 27, 2020.

2.Multiple Streams

HBO Max

Three simultaneous streams on the same account through different devices is pretty standard for on-demand streaming. The lowest we’ve seen is one stream for the most basic Netflix plan, while the highest is Apple TV+ at six—a rare case of Apple giving something away for cheap.

Unlike previous HBO streaming services, HBO Max can be set up for up to five separate viewer profiles, with individual preferences and even color-coding.

In another first, HBO Max allows downloads for offline mobile viewing, a convenience that HBO previously didn’t offer. The $9.99 ad-supported HBO Max, however, doesn’t do offline downloads—another strike against it.

HBO GO 

The whole repository of HBO-original programming could be accessed through this app, which included a wide list of engaging seasons, documentaries, and exclusive shows in the main. Moreover, HBO GO also sported feature films, theatrically released movies, and blockbusters such as A Star is Born, which fell under the distribution contract with HBO. However, some old HBO programs such as The Ricky Gervais Show, Tenacious D, and Tales from the Crypt were not available to stream on the HBO GO app.

HBO  Now

The streaming quality was excellent on all of the different devices we tried out. Loading times were short, freezing and choppiness were virtually nonexistent, and the video quality stayed high throughout our viewing. The mobile picture quality (shown above) was sometimes a touch lower than the quality on our Roku, which consistently stayed in HD during our tests.

3.Supported Devices

HBO Max

The following devices are supported by HBO Max. If a device is supported, you'll find the HBO Max app in the app store.

  • Amazon Fire tablets (4th gen or later)

  • Amazon Fire TV (with Fire OS 5.3.6 or later)

  • Amazon Fire TV Stick

  • Amazon Fire TV Cube

  • Amazon Fire TV Edition Smart TVs (Insignia HD, Insignia 4K UHD, Toshiba HD, Toshiba 4K UHD)

  • Android phones and tablets (with Android OS 5+)

  • Android TV (OS 5+)

  • Apple TV (4th gen or later)

  • Chromebooks

  • Chromecast

  • iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch (with iOS 12.2+)

  • LG Smart TVs (webOS 4.0+)

  • PC and Mac computers

  • PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5

  • Roku streaming devices (with OS 9.3 and above)

  • Roku TV’s (TCL, Hisense, Philips, Sanyo, Element, JVC, RCA, Hitachi, Magnavox, Westinghouse, Onn, InFocus)

  • Samsung TV (2016+)

  • VIZIO SmartCast TVs

  • Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

HBO GO

The interfaces for both HBO GO and HBO NOW are almost identical. Simultaneous streaming is also available with both HBO GO and HBO Now. That means that members of your household can sign into several devices and watch different content at the same time without getting locked out.

HBO GO is available on the following devices:

  • Apple iPad, iPhone, and Apple TV

  • Android phones, tablets, and Android TV

  • Amazon FireTablets, Amazon Fire TV and Fire Stick

  • Computers via web browser

  • Chromecast

  • PlayStation 3 and Playstation 4

  • Roku

  • Samsung Smart TV

  • Xbox 360 and Xbox One

HBO NOW 

The HBO NOW app is available across a wide range of devices, giving you the ability to watch your favorite HBO shows and movies anytime, anywhere. 

HBO NOW is compatible with these devices:

  • Amazon Fire TV

  • Apple TV

  • Google Chromecast (Google Cast)

  • Roku

  • Android TV

  • iPhone/iPad (iOS 8.1+)

  • Android Phone/Tablet (4.1+)

  • Mac

  • Windows

  • PlayStation

  • Xbox

  • LG Smart TV (AirPlay)

  • Samsung Smart TV (2016+)

  • Sony Smart TV

  • VIZIO Smart TV (AirPlay/Google Cast)

4. Speed Requirement

HBO Max 

You need to have at least 5 Mbps internet speed at your disposal to stream HBO Max content in standard quality. Since this mega-streaming platform is an updated version of the previous apps, its minimum required speed threshold is also relatively higher.

HBO GO

With HBO GO, you could stream shows in standard quality if your internet provider delivered at least 3 Mbps recommended download speed to your household. 

HBO Now 

In order to enjoy HBO Now content in high definition, you had to have a recommended internet speed of 10 to 20 Mbps. And no less than 3 Mbps was required to view the shows in standard quality.

5.User Experience

HBO Max 

HBO Max has been winning the hearts of users with its variety of content. Popular movies, podcasts, documentaries, series, and talk shows are all available in this one app. It is designed in a user-friendly way and possesses big, attractive thumbnails which makes browsing for titles easier. It also supports 1080p definition, which is full HD. Imagine how marvelous, and larger-than-life Wonder Woman 1984 will look on your HD display in 1080p! 

HBO Go

The users of HBO GO were satisfied as the app worked easily on Android or Apple iOS. It could also be connected through video game consoles, smart TVs, and streaming devices, including Fire TV and Roku.

HBO Now

HBO Now received a positive response from its users due to its immense library of engaging content. It also enabled them to stream across three to four simultaneous screens within the same price tag, which was truly amazing. 

6.Mobile Apps

While nearly every platform has access to apps for both Now and Go, not every major device is confirmed to get an HBO Max app at launch. 

APPHBO NowHBO GoHBO Max
Apple iOS iPhone and iPadYesYesYes
Android phones and tabletsYesYesYes
Apple TVYesYesYes
RokuYesYesNo
Amazon Fire TVYesYesNo
PlayStation 4YesYesYes
Xbox OneYesYesYes
ChromecastYesYesYes
Android TVYesYesYes
Computer browserYesYesYes
Samsung smart TVYesYesYes

HBO Max vs. HBO Go vs. HBO Now: The Main Differences

HBO Max 

If you’re already an HBO subscriber, the choice of whether or not to get HBO Max has been decided for you; start streaming. As we said earlier, HBO Max doesn’t have the same number of TV shows and movies as its competitors, but its deep back catalogue and upcoming exclusives won’t be available to stream anywhere else.In our mind, that makes an HBO Max subscription more than worth it. Even at the higher $14.99 tier, the monthly price is cheaper than a movie ticket to see the new releases in theaters. 

HBO GO 

Deciding between HBO GO and HBO NOW has appeared to create the most confusion for streaming enthusiasts. However, HBO has made it relatively simple. HBO GO is strictly for those who have a satellite/cable provider with an HBO subscription, while HBO NOW can be enjoyed by anyone for a monthly subscription fee. For those who want to enjoy HBO content and are already paying a cable or satellite provider for television services, HBO GO is an excellent option. 

HBO NOW 

HBO NOW can be inelegant to use at time, but it'€™s functional enough and delivers excellent streaming quality once you'€™ve found the content you'€™re looking for. It'€™s a bit pricey, but the quality of HBO's original content helps to justify the cost. HBO NOW's interface could certainly use some work, but fans of HBO's shows will find that this app's pros outweigh its cons.

The Bottom Line:

  • HBO Now and HBO Go differed in terms of how you accessed HBO content: either as a standalone streaming service for the former, or through a cable TV package for the latter. Neither of them exist anymore; you can't sign up to them.

  • HBO Max, on the other hand, is essentially the replacement for HBO Now and HBO Go. It offers a central platform through which HBO subscribers can access content, with a larger catalog of series and movies—thanks to the inclusion of WarnerMedia properties.

HBO Max vs. HBO Go vs. HBO Now:Outlook

HBO Max is the third streaming service to include the HBO name, so you may be confused about how all these services differ. HBO retired HBO Go years ago. All of HBO Go's customers will be moved to HBO Max. HBO Now is now simply called HBO.

HBO is the service to get if you want only HBO's original content. HBO Max, as I discuss in the next section, includes all HBO shows, plus a ton of content from WarnerMedia's other media branches.

Since HBO and HBO Max cost the same, you may be wondering if there's any reason to choose HBO over HBO Max. Now that HBO Max supports Roku devices, there isn't.

FAQ

1.How to Turn HBO Go Into HBO Max for FREE?

WarnerMedia has made it easy for customers to transition to HBO Max from HBO Go. Though the HBO Go app was removed from primary platforms, a pop-up now appears encouraging users to sign up for the HBO Max. Many HBO Go customers have free access to HBO Max, so it’s simply a matter of creating an account and switching your information over to the new service.

2.Which Streaming Service Offers The Best Original Content?

HBO Go and HBO Now have been discontinued. HBO Max offers all the same content as the HBO app, plus a catalog of content from other Warner Media properties. HBO Max has taken over HBO's streaming content, thanks to its more centralized login process and larger catalog.

3.How do you get HBO for free?

If you want to access HBO without paying extra for it, you should keep an eye out for promotions—it’s not uncommon to find deals like a year of HBO free when you sign up with a new provider. AT&T currently offers HBO Max to customers signed up for certain qualifying internet, wireless, and TV plans. Hulu offers a one-week trial of HBO Max through its service, and other phone and cable companies sometimes offer free trials.

4.Can you get HBO Max on Amazon?

HBO Max is currently unavailable on Amazon Fire TV and Roku devices. If you have Amazon Fire TV or Roku, you can still use the HBO app (formerly known as HBO NOW).

Or you can access HBO Max through other means. For example, you can mirror your Android screen, download the Android TV version of the app onto Amazon Fire TV, or view HBO Max on your computer and then connect that to your TV with an HDMI cable. Get more details on how these options work.

5.HBO vs. HBO Max:what’s the difference?

The difference between HBO and HBO Max is related to the amount of content you get per service. HBO gives you access to the HBO catalog and lets you watch HBO live if you have a subscription through a cable or satellite TV package. HBO Max is a standalone streaming service that gives you everything on HBO along with movies, shows, and other titles from WarnerMedia Entertainment.

HBO NOW, the standalone streaming service version of the premium channel, will just be called HBO from now on. But it doesn’t give you all the content you get with HBO Max, so HBO Max is still the better bet.

ServicePriceContentAvailable formatsSign Up

HBO (channel)

$5–$20/mo. (requires cable or satellite TV)

HBO catalog

Cable and satellite TV

Sign up

HBO (app)

$14.99/mo.

HBO catalog

Web browser, Amazon Fire TV, Roku, and other major platforms and providers

Sign up

HBO Max

$14.99/mo.

HBO catalog + WarnerEntertainment programming

Web browser, AT&T TV, Cox, Hulu, Spectrum, Xfinity, and other major providers (unavailable on Amazon Fire TV & Roku)

Sign up

6.What happened to HBO GO and HBO NOW?

AT&T discontinued HBO GO on July 31, 2020, so it’s no longer available. HBO NOW, meanwhile, will just be known as HBO. You can technically sign up for this version of HBO as a standalone service, but getting HBO Max is the same price and the hot ticket to get.

7.How to Cancel HBO NOW?

Canceling HBO NOW can be a bit trickier than canceling some other services. That's because HBO NOW generally requires you to cancel your subscription on whatever platform you used to sign up for it.

HBO NOW allows you to sign up for just HBO and to stream HBO on HBO's own app (which is called HBO NOW, of course). But it's not always billed to you directly by HBO. If you sign up for HBO NOW on your iPhone, for instance, HBO will bill you through your Apple account. To cancel HBO NOW, you have to use your iOS device.

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2022-03-05 00:041198