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HBO Max debuts without the two most popular streaming platforms, Roku or Amazon

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HBO Max debuts without the two most popular streaming platforms, Roku or Amazon

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The latest streaming service HBO Max bowed with unlimited access to all episodes of "Friends", "The Big Bang Theory" and "Game of Thrones". But if all you have is a streaming player from Roku or Amazon, you won't be able to watch it.

Roku and Amazon are the two largest streaming platforms by far, with a combined market share of 33%, according to Parks Associates, and Max is also unavailable. It is visible in the two competing competitors for less streaming, Apple TV (4%) and Google Chromecast (3%).

Max is also available on some recent Samsung and Sony smart TVs, as well as computers, phones and tablets, on the Microsoft Xbox One and Sony PlayStation 4 gaming platforms.

"The Big Bang Theory" actress Kaley Cuoco is in her 12th season – the last of the show – playing Penny, alongside Jim Parson's Sheldon and Johnny Galecki's Leonard. (Photo: MICHAEL YARISH / CBS)

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AT&T's HBO Max has an advertised price of $ 14.99 a month for access to reruns and movies from Warner Bros. libraries. and HBO, plus some originals, including "Love Life", starring Anna Kendrick in a romantic anthology.

But most people won't pay that if they already subscribe to HBO Now, the HBO streaming service that HBO offers without going through a cable operator.

Max is offered free to Now subscribers and the corporate owner AT&T is looking to make it as transparent as possible.

On the devices you work with, the HBO Now app will automatically update and HBO Max will be displayed instead.

"You don't have to log in," says HBO in an email to subscribers. "But if you do, log in using your HBO NOW email and password. You will be prompted with & # 39; Access all HBO Max & # 39; or & # 39; Access only HBO & # 39; – to experience all the HBO Max, select & # 39; Access all HBO Max. "

The old HBO NOW will be inside the app, including HBO's library and Max's news. HBO says it will have more than 10,000 hours of entertainment available.

In addition to streaming, many HBO cable and satellite subscribers also receive Max for free, as customers of AT&T TV, DIRECTV, AT&T U-Verse, Cox Contour, Optimum, Spectrum, Suddenlink and Verizon Fios TV. But not all cable operators offer Max for free, and there is a huge omission: the country's largest cable operator, Comcast. But whoever offers it will offer streaming access to Max, not a separate cable channel from Max.

Phil Swann, author of the TV Answer Man blog, says that many of his readers are intrigued by the launch. "They have no idea," he says. "They don't understand why HBO Max isn't on Roku or Amazon. It's just a sea of ​​confusion for them."

Example: HBO Max is available for purchase directly on Hulu and YouTube TV streaming services. But if you watch these services on an Amazon or Roku player (or Roku-branded TCL smart TVs), your $ 15 a month won't be worth much. Max will not be playable.

And if you signed up for HBO Now via Roku or Amazon, your app will not be updated for Max, because HBO and the companies were unable to reach an agreement.

Asked about the absence of Roku / Amazon, "We don't have an update to share," said Chris Willard, vice president of communications for WarnerMedia at AT&T. "As of now there is no agreement. If that changes, we will inform you."

Follow Jefferson Graham of USA TODAY (@jeffersongraham) on Twitter

Read or share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2020/05/27/no-roku-amazon-fire-tv-hbo-maxs-debut-apple-and-google-in/ 5262019002 /

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