WarnerMedia is hoping to clear up the confusion by rebranding the HBO streaming apps.

By Tyler Aquilina
June 12, 2020 at 08:14 PM EDT
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Credit: Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

WarnerMedia has received a good deal of ribbing for naming their new streaming service HBO Max, not only because the platform features much more than just HBO content, but also because two other streaming services with "HBO" in the name already existed. We've explained the difference between HBO's Go, Now, and Max elsewhere, but it essentially boils down to this: HBO Go comes included with HBO TV subscriptions, while HBO Now is a standalone streaming platform you can subscribe to without cable. Both offer only HBO content, including movies currently licensed to the channel.

But none of that matters anymore. For WarnerMedia is attempting to clear up the confusion themselves by "sunsetting" HBO Go and rebranding HBO Now as, simply, HBO. The HBO Go app will be removed from platforms on July 31. In other words: HBO Go is HBO Gone, and HBO Now is just HBO, now.

Still confused? We don't blame you.

For one thing, you might be wondering, "Why are they keeping HBO Now around when HBO Max offers all the same content, and more?" Good question. Apparently it's because HBO Max still isn't available on Roku and Amazon Fire TV, while HBO Now (soon to be HBO) is. To continue having a presence on those platforms, WarnerMedia will need to keep HBO Now around for the time being.

Also, HBO Now subscribers received HBO Max access at launch for no additional charge, so it's not like they're missing out. Most of HBO's cable subscribers also received access to HBO Max through deals that WarnerMedia struck with TV providers. Once HBO Max is available on more platforms, it's likely the App Formerly Known as HBO Now will go gentle into that good night as well.

Yes, it's all still rather confusing. But one thing is for sure: Whatever app you have, it's not TV.

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