HBO Launching Streaming Service in Spain With Vodafone26 May, 2016 By: Erik Gruenwedel
HBO is partnering with Vodafone in Spain to launch a subscription streaming video service similar to HBO Now in the United States and HBO Nordics in Scandinavia.
Dubbed HBO España, the service will feature catalog as well current programming, including “Game of Thrones,” “True Detective” and “Veep,” among others.
HBO, which is owned by Time Warner, had previously announced it would bow standalone service in Spain following launches in Brazil and Argentina. It is also available in Colombia.
Partnering with British-based telecom Vodafone, which claims 400 million subscribers in 30 countries globally, including 1 million TV subs in Spain, affords HBO an existing distribution channel. Spain, whose unemployment levels rank among the highest in the European Union, also has one of the highest percentages of broadband-only households — and piracy, according to Parks Associates.
The latter could be an issue says Parks analyst Brett Sappington.
“Getting consumers to be willing to pay has been a consistent difficulty,” he told Bloomberg.
Vodafone also bowed a proprietary 4K Ultra HD set-top box recently, which enables subscribers access to Netflix, among other SVOD services.