For those of you who are tired of paying overwhelming amounts of money for cable television, there is yet another solution to alleviate your woes: HBO Now.
Available today on iOS devices like Apple TV, iPhones and iPads, the HBO Now app allows users to stream all of HBO’s content – shows, documentaries, movies and more – for only $14.99 a month, with the first month of service free for users who sign up in April. Another plus is that users don’t have to be a subscriber to HBO through their cable or satellite TV provider, which charges an additional fee for the premium channel, or, in Comcast’s case, is part of package that costs a minimum of $50 a month.
The app is part of a growing movement away from the outdated and costly model of traditional cable television. With streaming video services like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime, viewers are finding an increasing amount of alternatives to watch television and movies. Gone are the days when you had to wait until a certain time to watch a show or search endlessly through channels to find a movie. Now all you have to do is fire up an app, search for whatever it is you want, and there you have it, a feast for your eyeballs.
Now that users can eschew the extraneous amount of channels that one would receive on cable to purchase a single channel, the question remains whether or not other channels will follow in HBO’s footsteps and launch their own standalone app. Let’s be honest, with some networks offering over 420 channels — an absurd quantity no one truly needs — how many of those channels do you actually watch? Five, seven, ten?
It would be ideal to one day purchase channels on an à la carte basis and build your own network of channels. Pick a channel here, a channel there, and that’s it – no more Comedy Central for the humorless, no more MSNBC for the nihilist, no more QVC for the antimaterialist – just whatever you find essential to your viewing experience. Although that situation is unlikely to come to fruition for quite some time, if ever, at least at this moment things appear to be moving in the right direction.
Is this something you find intriguing, or is the $14.99 fee a month too much to pay for one channel, regardless if it’s arguably producing the strongest shows on television? We’d like to know.