Speed Reads

streaming wars

HBO Max and Discovery+ to combine into 1 streamer next summer

What's the future of HBO Max after the WarnerMedia-Discovery merger? The company has provided a few new details.

During a highly anticipated earnings call on Thursday, Warner Bros. Discovery announced its two streaming services, HBO Max and Discovery+, will be combined into a single offering in the United States in summer 2023. Discovery+ is focused largely on unscripted content from brands like HGTV and Food Network, while HBO Max includes a variety of WarnerMedia brands and original scripted content.

Thursday's earnings call was closely watched after Warner Bros. Discovery surprisingly canceled a nearly completed Batgirl movie, reportedly due to CEO David Zaslav's desire to move the company away from original streaming movies. Since then, reports revealed HBO Max has been removing a variety of flims and TV shows from its service, sparking frenzied speculation about the streamer's fate under its new ownership. 

But the earnings call suggested any dramatic overhaul or rebranding of HBO Max isn't likely to come for at least another year. It still hasn't been revealed what the combined streaming service will be called and whether it will retain the HBO Max name, but details are expected to be announced closer to launch.

JB Perrette, Warner Bros. Discovery CEO and president of global streaming and games, described HBO Max and Discovery+ as "unique and complementary" services, the former of which offers "appointment viewing" and the latter of which offers "comfort viewing."  

Underlining the wide variety of brands the company plans to bring under one umbrella, a graphic was shown during the earnings call showcasing Warner Bros. Discovery's biggest franchises. The collection included BatmanGame of ThronesHarry Potter, and "the 90 Day Fiancé Universe.