Discovery has revealed plans to merge its Discovery+ streaming service with HBO Max to form a single platform following an impending merger with HBO parent company WarnerMedia, but won’t say whether subscription prices will increase.
The network, which will launch Warner Bros. Discovery will be, Monday confirmed its plans to combine the two streaming services in one service, rather than offering the two platforms as a bundle.
Discovery+ is known for its documentaries and factual reality shows, including Chip and Joanna Gaines’ Fixer Upper series, while HBO is famous for luxury dramas and comedies, including Sex and the City reboot And Just Like That.
Discovery+ currently costs $4.99 per month with ads, or $6.99 per month without, while HBO Max charges $9.99. for an ad-free service, or $14.99 for ad-free streaming.
Discovery CFO Gunnar Wiedenfels declined to be pulled whether the overall package would lead to a price hike, opting instead to discuss possible ways to “bundle” both services.
The Discovery+ streaming service logo on a smartphone lined up in the Brooklyn borough of New York, US, on Thursday, December 31, 2020
HBO Max to Merge with Discovery to Form One Streaming Platform Following Its Upcoming Merger with WarnerMedia for a Combined 100 Million Subscribers
“One of the key points here is that we believe in a combined product rather than a bundle… We believe the breadth and depth of this content offering will be a phenomenal consumer value proposition,” Wiedenfels said.
“The question is, getting to that point and doing it in a way that is really a great user experience for our subscribers is going to take some time. Again, that will not be in weeks – hopefully not in years, but in a few months – and in the meantime we are working on an interim solution.’
“So we’re working right away to get the bundling approach ready, maybe a single sign-on, maybe include content in the other product, etc,” he added.
‘But the main driver will be the harmonization of the technology platform. Building a very, very strongly combined direct-to-consumer product and platform, that’s going to take some time.’
On Monday, however, Wiedenfels did not say how much the combined streaming platform would cost consumers, although he did state that Warner Bros. Discovery will offer both ad-free and ad-lite options.
As of now, Discovery+ costs $4.99 per month with ads or $6.99 without ads, which makes up the bulk of Discovery’s streaming subtotal.
The company had 22 million customers worldwide at the end of last year.
Meanwhile, HBO Max and HBO finished 2021 with a combined 73.8 million worldwide subscribers.
Chip and Joanna Gaines are the most famous faces of the Discovery network, thanks to their home renovation shows
HBO Max is best known for its glossy dramas, including Sex and the City reboot And Just Like that, which stars Kristin Davis, Sarah Jessica Parker and Cynthia Nixon in the summer of 2021 in Manhattan.
Discovery shareholders voted Friday to approve the media company’s $43 billion merger with WarnerMedia. Discovery CEO David Zaslav can be seen above
The platform currently costs $9.99 per month with ads and $14.99 per month as an ad-free service.
The news comes just days after Discovery shareholders voted Friday to approve the media company’s $43 billion merger with WarnerMedia, bringing the deal one step closer to closing after the resolution of messy scandals at WarnerMedia subsidiary CNN. .
The outcome was almost certain, as two of Discovery’s major investors, John C. Malone and Advance/Newhouse, agreed to vote their shares in favor of the merger. Together they represent 43 percent of Discovery’s voting shares.
In May, AT&T announced it would split WarnerMedia, which includes HBO, CNN and the Warner Bros. studio, and merge with Discovery.
Puck media reporter Dylan Byers reported that CNN boss Jeff Zucker and his top lieutenant Allison Gollust would reportedly take up senior positions within the new company.