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Time Warner Cable to Bow HBO, Cinemax Portability in January

18 Dec, 2011 By: Erik Gruenwedel

More than 1,800 movies and TV shows will be available on PCs and select mobile devices to Time Warner Cable subscribers

Time Warner Cable in January will make available for the first time premium movies and television shows from HBO and Cinemax to its authenticated subscribers via portable devices.

TWC subs will have remote access to current and catalog HBO series (more than 1,400 titles) such as “Game of Thrones,” “True Blood,” “Boardwalk Empire,” “The Sopranos,” “Sex and the City” and “Deadwood,” in addition to original films, miniseries, sports, documentaries and specials. Separately, Cinemax's MAX Go offers more than 400 titles, including theatrical releases, indie and cult films.

The No. 2 cable operator said it has begun beta testing HBO Go and MAX Go to its subscribers — both platforms designed to retain and lure premium channel pay-TV subs at a time when subscription-based video-on-demand services such as Netflix and Hulu Plus expand access and programming. Some analysts contend so-called “over-the-top” services are undermining traditional multichannel video distributors such as cable and satellite TV.

Indeed, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings recently said he considers HBO Go — not Amazon Prime and Hulu Plus — as the service’s principle streaming competitor going forward.

In addition to unlimited streaming access, subs also will have the ability to create lists (similar to rental/streaming queues) of bookmarked content for later viewing. Bonus content will include interviews, recaps and behind-the-scenes extras, as well as customizable views showing titles in slideshow, grid or list format.

HBO Go also can be personalized with alerts notifying viewers of pending new episodes of favorite HBO programs.

It should be noted that HBO Go and MAX Go currently operate only on computers with a broadband connection (minimum 3G speed for mobile devices).


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