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HBO Max Raises Prices Amid Warner Bros. Discovery Dysfunction

The service's ad-free plan has increased from $14.99 to $15.99 per month.
  • Photo: Presley Ann/Getty Images for WarnerMedia
    Photo: Presley Ann/Getty Images for WarnerMedia

    An HBO Max subscription just got a bit more expensive. Effective Thursday, January 12, HBO Max's ad-free subscription has increased from $14.99 to $15.99 per month for new U.S. customers. The price hike comes after months of chaos within parent company Warner Bros. Discovery, which has begun removing popular titles from the platform in an effort to cut costs.

    Current HBO Max customers will see the new monthly rate reflected in their next billing cycle, on or after February 11. Subscribers interested in cutting costs themselves can take advantage of HBO Max's ad-supported subscription plan, which is currently priced at $9.99 per month or $99 per year.

    The 2023 rate increase marks the first time HBO Max has raised the price of a monthly subscription since launching in May 2020. According to the company, "This price increase of one dollar will allow us to continue to invest in providing even more culture-defining programming and improving our customer experience for all users."

    This marks the latest effort by Warner Bros. Discovery to increase profits in the wake of its April 2022 merger. Shortly after, HBO Max, at the direction of WBD CEO David Zaslav, began cancelling nearly-completed projects like Batgirl and quietly disappearing titles, writing them off for tax purposes.

    As of December, more than 80 titles have been removed from HBO Max, including HBO juggernaut Westworld, period comedy Minx, and reality TV show FBoy Island. Many of these titles will be licensed to free, ad-supported streaming (FAST) services like Pluto TV and the Roku Channel, a move WBD claims will "further expand the reach of the shows."

    Claire Spellberg Lustig is the Senior Editor at Primetimer and a scholar of The View. Follow her on Twitter at @c_spellberg.

    TOPICS: HBO Max, Streaming TV, Warner Bros. Discovery