Apple announces exclusive HBO platform, lowers price of Apple TV

Apple announces exclusive partnership to bring HBO to new users, lowers cost of its Apple TV.

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES (MARCH 09, 2015) (APPLE) – The anticipated standalone streaming service from premium channel HBO will launch in April exclusively on Apple Inc devices, in time for the season premiere of acclaimed series “Game of Thrones,” the network said on Monday (March 9).

HBO Now will cost $14.99 per month and will include all past, present and future HBO programming plus the network’s lineup of Hollywood movies, HBO Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Richard Plepler said at an Apple event in San Francisco.

The service will be available starting in early April through a new channel on Apple TV and on iPhones and iPads. “Game of Thrones” premieres on April 12.

HBO, a unit of Time Warner Inc, has been available only to customers with a pay television subscription. With HBO Now, the company is aiming to reach people who have broadband access but don’t want to pay for a traditional TV package of dozens of other channels.

“We are thrilled to be here this morning to announce our standalone streaming service, HBO Now. And we couldn’t be prouder that Apple is our exclusive partner at large. When you subscribe to HBO now, you will have access to all our acclaimed original program, past, present, and future, as well as our unmatched lineup of Hollywood blockbusters,” Plepler said after an introduction from Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook.

Time Warner shares rose 0.8 percent to $84.74 on the New York Stock Exchange. Shares of Netflix, a competitor to HBO, fell 2.2 percent to $443.92 on Nasdaq.

Shares of Apple were up 2 percent at $129.29 on Nasdaq.