Discovery+ will reportedly remain a separate app rather than merge with HBO Max

Warner Bros. Discovery is reportedly backtracking on a decision to merge its two streaming services, HBO Max and Discovery+. The merger of Warner Bros. and Discovery resulted in the formation of the new company, Warner Bros. Discovery, led by CEO David Zaslav. It’s been an open secret that WBD wanted to consolidate its assets, meaning that instead of having two streaming services, the company would whittle that down to one. WBD was reportedly close to finalizing a name for the combined HBO Max/discovery+ in December, but now a new report claims that discovery+ will instead remain a separate app.

Wall Street Journal reports that the plan is to keep discovery+ as a standalone app. Warner Bros. However, Discovery is apparently still going to introduce a new streaming service that includes HBO Max and most of the Discovery+ content. The reason for this change in approach reportedly boils down to WBD not wanting to lose Discovery+’s 20 million subscribers, as the forthcoming new service will have a higher price. Discovery+ ad-free costs $6.99 per month and the ad-supported version costs $4.99. On the other hand, HBO Max costs $15.99 a month with no ads and $9.99 with ads, with the new service expected to cost even more than HBO Max currently. Sources list the content available on Discovery+, and the new app includes Discovery Channel’s “Shark Week” and shows from Chip and Joanna Gaines’s Magnolia Network.

Warner Bros. Discovery licenses HBO Max shows for other streaming services

Warner Bros. Discovery announced in December that instead of hosting some of its original programming on HBO and HBO Max, the company will license certain shows to third-party FAST streaming services. FAST stands for free streaming television with advertisements, such as Paramount’s Pluto TV and FOX’s Tubi. Fans have not been encouraged by the news that such fan-favorite shows like them West world And The Nevers were removed from HBO Max, meaning subscribers wouldn’t get a chance to stream them again. Add that to the cancellations of Gordita Chronicles And Minx, and consumer confidence in HBO Max and Warner Bros. Discovery is at an all-time low. Fortunately, the news of potential licensing deals means these shows won’t fade into the background and be forgotten.

The decision by Warner Bros. Discovery to move some of its programming to outside streaming services is to “strategically assess how best to maximize audience and monetization opportunities for the content”. Part of this move will eventually lead to the creation of Warner Bros. Discovery’s own FAST service, though additional details won’t be shared until 2023.

“We are incredibly proud West world and the remarkable work of our cast and crew. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to welcome a whole new audience to our show,” West world creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy said in a joint statement.

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