In a market that is already saturated with 35+ OTT streaming platforms, HBO Max is looking to make its place and garner a considerable share of the online video streaming subscriber base in India. The streamer had recently appointed Amit Malhotra as the Managing Director of HBO Max in Southeast Asia and India, which was the first indication of its inclination to launch services in India. Now an online pre-launch survey conducted by ‘Nepa’ (a leading market research company) has been shared with us by one of our readers on the condition of anonymity, which reveals the go-to-market strategy of HBO Max in India and offers an insight at its tentative plans and pricing.
HBO Max features a large variety of big titles of movies and series combined with HBO content, plus HBO Max originals productions. The all-access service includes top HBO shows like Game of Thrones and Westworld to fan favourites from the DC Universe and Cartoon Network, epic movies from the Harry Potter series, Inception, Matrix, Batman plus the entire library of hit series like Friends and The Big Bang Theory. Additionally, HBO Max will have riveting Indian original content featuring stars like Saif Ali Khan, Alia Bhatt and Anil Kapoor and directors like Anurag Kashyap, Vishal Bharadwaj and Rituparno Ghosh.
- Personalised home screen
- Profiles (including Kids’ profiles with age ratings)
- Concurrent streams
- 4K resolution
- Dolby Atmos sound
- Localisation (Subtitles in local Indian languages)
Plans and Pricing:
HBO Max will offer the subscribers a choice of 3 plans, all of which offer access to content in all languages and allow the creation of up to 5 viewer profiles. The Ad-supported plan allows viewing in SD resolution with up to 2 concurrent streams on all devices, the episodes of a series will only be available after the entire season has finished airing and movies will only be available after one year of theatrical or digital release, the plan will be priced at Rs 69/month. The mobile plan will allow Ad-free streaming in SD resolution with only a single concurrent stream viewable only on a mobile or tablet screen, the episodes of a series will be available 2-3 weeks after global release and movies will be available 6-8 months after the theatrical or digital release, the plan will be priced at Rs 139/month. The standard plan will allow Ad-free streaming in 4K resolution with up to 3 concurrent streams viewable on all devices, the episodes of a series and movies will be available directly after their global theatrical or digital release, this plan will be priced at Rs 329/month.
HBO Max will also offer annual subscription options for its Mobile and Standard subscription plans with deep discounting. The annual subscription of the Mobile plan will be priced at Rs 1001/year at a 40% discount over the monthly plan cost. The annual subscription of the standard plan will be priced at Rs 1974/year at a 50% discount over the monthly plan cost. It is worth noting that these prices are for reference purposes only and the actual prices at the time of commercial launch may vary. Nepa had presented the subjects of the survey with a wide array of alternative pricing options comparing HBO Max subscription with the likes of Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+ Hotstar, Lionsgate Play, etc. to test the viewer’s willingness to pay for content at different price points.
An HBO spokesperson contacted OnlyTech with an official statement on the back of our exclusive coverage on its potential launch of services in India, the statement read “We routinely conduct market research with consumers in countries around the world that test a wide range of possible offers and price points for our services. Those being reported that suggest a future launch of HBO Max in India are amongst many being tested and evaluated and do not reflect any current plans.”