HBO Max has announced its first-ever price hike as the streaming service and home of Game of Thrones House of the Dragon, and the upcoming Last of Us series will increase to $15.99 a month.
Currently priced at $14.99, the one-dollar price increase is the first bump in cost for the service since it launched in May 2020.
The changes are effective immediately for new customers as of January 12th. But existing customers will see the increase when their next bill starts charging on or after February 11th. Customers, therefore, have just under a month to cancel their subscription if they are unhappy with the new price.
The price increase occurs soon before the January 16th release of The Last of Us on this platform. Characters Ellie and Joel, played by Game of Throne’s Bella Ramsey and Pedro Pascal, explore a devastated America. This is the first price hike for HBO Max since the service launched in May 2020. It comes just before the service is expected to undergo a makeover that will reportedly merge US HBO Max and Discovery+ programming under the brand name “Max.”
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When the economy was bad in 2022, it hurt Warner Bros. Discovery. Because more subscribers were leaving linear TV, a slowdown in advertising and various restructuring charges occurred.
In response to these ongoing efforts, CEO David Zaslav canceled several HBO Max-exclusive projects to streamline the financially unstable company.
After a rough 2022, Goldman Sachs and Bank of America analysts predicted better times for the entertainment powerhouse.
Goldman Sachs analyst Brett Feldman named the company his “top media stock” for 2023. He noted recent merger accomplishments and its spring streaming debut. Since December 29th, Warner Bros. stock, which dropped over 60% in 2022, has risen by about the same amount.